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IHS Infonetics' Cloud Unified Communications Scorecard

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IHS Infonetics' Cloud Unified Communications Scorecard

May 13, 2015
By Peter Bernstein
Senior Editor

It is human nature that we all like to keep score.  And, in hotly contested technology markets, it is never boring for vendors to get the latest on where they stand.  Well,  market research firms IHS Infonetics (News - Alert) has released excerpts from its 2015 Cloud UC Service Provider North America Scorecard, which analyzes and ranks the top cloud/hosted unified communications (UC) providers in North America.  For those in the incredibly competitive and growing cloud-based UC and customer interactions markets, this report is sure to generate interest. 

A tale of the vendors

For those not familiar with IHS Infonetics' annual North American UC cloud scorecard it is worth pointing out that its rankings are based on criteria such as installed base of seats, financial stability, market strategy, service capabilities and support options. In short, significant metrics have been used in their evaluation of the major vendors in the space.  

Source (News - Alert)Infonetics Research, now part of HIS

There are lessons to be learned from current market leader 8x8. As noted by Diane Myers, research director for VoIP, UC and IMS at IHS Infonetics:  “8x8 is the decisive leader in the hosted UC market for the second year in a row, building on its solid financial position over the past three-plus years and its continued focus on service enhancements and geographic expansion. Although its installed base is still heavily small businesses, 8x8 is successfully moving upmarket.”

Additional highlights in the report include: 

  • As shown in the chart, 8x8, West IP Communications, Vonage (News - Alert), RingCentral and Comcast top the rankings.  It is noted that Vonage made the biggest jump by accelerating its customer base through acquisitions.
  • Comprising the second tier of leaders in the scorecard are Broadview Networks, Mitel, Star2Star, Thinking Phone (News - Alert) Networks and Verizon (listed in alphabetical order).
  • Growing fast and doing great things in the UC-as-a-Service space, and coming in right below the top 10, are a broad mix of providers such as CenturyLink, CoreDial, Cox, Earthlink (News - Alert), iCore, Masergy, Megapath, ShoreTel, Windstream and XO .

Myers in a recent report on the cloud PBX and UC services market estimated the combined market would grow to $12 billion by 2018 with over 62 million seats in service, and growth year over year is expected to exceed single digits.  In short, this is a big market that is expanding rapidly after years of under-performing expectations and who will get what shares remains fluid based on the rapid changes in the market including things like the impact of WebRTC and the need for omnichannel capabilities.  

Edited by Dominick Sorrentino

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