The world videoconferencing market continues to grow at a healthy pace. The economic slump, while putting downward pressure on IT spending, could be a market driver, as videoconferencing helps companies reduce their travel and facilities costs, while supporting a virtual workplace.
The shift toward converged Internet protocol (IP) networks, rising interest in unified communications (UC), and the need to focus on core competencies are driving the demand for conferencing service providers (CSP)-based managed videoconferencing services. From a service-provider perspective, managed services contracts are financially lucrative, triggering vendors to develop videoconferencing solutions with additional services.
New analysis from Frost & Sullivan (conferencing.frost.com), North American CSP-based Videoconferencing Services Market, finds that the market earned revenues of over $265.4 million in 2008, with a growth of 11 percent over the previous year. The videoconferencing CSP-based managed services market was at $151.3 million in 2008 and is expected to reach $375.5 million by 2014, growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 16.4 percent.
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"Several market forces are merging to create a market that is ripe for change," says Frost & Sullivan Principal Analyst Roopam Jain. "Now is the inflection point for large-scale videoconferencing technology adoption."
The key business drivers for videoconferencing adoption are increasing globalization and the business need for reducing costs while improving productivity. Organizations of various sizes are supporting a globally dispersed and increasingly mobile workforce, creating a large potential market. A growing focus on green initiatives is expected to become a significant driver for the market. With the impending arrival of green mandates over the next few years, videoconferencing will be vital for businesses in reducing their carbon footprint.
The emergence of Web 2.0 in the enterprise sector, along with increased usage of video in the consumer space, will affect the adoption of video among enterprises. Businesses will be keener on technologies that accommodate the new workforce generation, with video fitting into that paradigm. Finally, there is a growing awareness for UC. As the enterprise communication industry converges around it, there will be increased adoption of videoconferencing, which is becoming an integral part of all UC products.
However, IT spending and deployment of enterprise communications technologies face considerable headwind from the economic slump that continues to loom large over the market in 2009. The downturn will put tremendous pressure on IT budgets, and this is likely to lower the momentum of videoconferencing markets compared to that of the last two years.
Nevertheless, conferencing technologies will survive due to their potential cost savings and established return-on-investment (ROI). The impact of the economic meltdown on conferencing markets will be bi-directional. On one hand, companies that face a severe credit crisis and survival issues may have to cut corners, which include capital expenditure (CAPEX)-oriented investments such as videoconferencing. On the other hand, companies that face less severe capital constraints will not only reduce costs, but also seek additional opportunities to improve business performance.
They will look at IT to reduce operational costs and increase revenues in the short term through technologies such as videoconferencing. As the enterprise communication industry converges around UC, videoconferencing will grow significantly due to the mounting usage at the desktop level as well as by generating additional demand for room systems and telepresence as an extension to the desktop arena. Telepresence-managed services are gradually becoming integrated into CSP portfolios and will be a significant source of future growth.
Videoconferencing end users continue to feel the inconvenience of managing a complex application, especially as IT departments are understaffed. End users are increasingly buying more expensive software solutions to support their videoconferencing customer premise equipment (CPE) investments and spending the time and cost in keeping pace with a fast-merging and dynamic technology.
All these efforts are typically overwhelming for IT managers and administrators, making a case for videoconferencing-managed services. Managed service solution comprises several layers of functionality, offering total implementation, support, management, and maintenance. The market for hosted services is stagnant, as most of the growth in the future will come from a comprehensive bundle of managed services. Demand for managed videoconferencing services will grow with enterprises focusing on core competencies and attempting to reduce internal management costs.
"Declining hardware and service costs, and availability of new solutions such as telepresence and high definition (HD) videoconferencing will all go a long way in improving the market’s prospects," concludes Jain.
North American CSP-based Videoconferencing Services Market is part of the Conferencing & Collaboration Growth Partnership Services program, which also includes research in the following markets: videoconferencing endpoints market, videoconferencing infrastructure systems market, audio conferencing bridge markets, audio conferencing services market, telepresence markets, web conferencing software markets, and web conferencing services markets. All research services included in subscriptions provide detailed market opportunities and industry trends that have been evaluated following extensive interviews with market participants.
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North American CSP-based Videoconferencing Services Market / N4B8