The cost savings, increased flexibility and versatility of IP-based contact center solutions along with their ability to support presence/unified communications (UC) and home-based agents is making them popular with buyers even with a deteriorating economy. That makes these applications one of the bright spots in an otherwise dismal environment.
A new report by Infonetics Research, Unified Communications (News - Alert) and IP Contact Center Market Share and Forecasts, reports that the IP contact center (IPCC) market will finish 2008 up 37 percent over 2007, with many vendors reporting robust sales, particularly in Asia Pacific. In the first half 2008 (1H08) over a million IPCC seats were sold worldwide.
Infonetics' report also shows sales of UC products will end mixed in 2008, with unified messaging platform sales up and communicator software sales flat. Infonetics defines IPCC products as including ACD, CTI (News - Alert), and IVR, including speech rec applications.
Of the suppliers Avaya still leads the IPCC market by far in 1H08, but lost share to Cisco and Alcatel-Lucent (News - Alert). Nortel takes the lead in unified messaging license market share in 1H08, while Avaya maintains its lead in revenue market share; Cisco is now a close 3rd for both.
Because of the deterioration in economic activity worldwide, Infonetics expects enterprise spending on telephony products will slow in 2009, which will also pull down the overall UC and IPCC markets. Yet the IPCC and communicator segments will weather the economic downturn better than others, such as IP/TDM-PBXes and enterprise switching and routing.
“The communicator market continues to be fluid, with growth not yet following established patterns and market share positions shifting one period to the next as PBX (News - Alert) vendors battle each other and Microsoft,” explains Matthias Machowinski, Directing Analyst, Enterprise Voice and Data, Infonetics Research. “It's an exciting market to watch, and one that should thrive in 2009, even as the overall enterprise telephony market declines due to the economic environment. Similarly, the IPCC market will slow down in 2009, but should do relatively well as customers find IP contact centers, self service, and automation cost effective ways to deliver on customer service.” Brendan B. Read is TMCnet�s Senior Contributing Editor. To read more of Brendan�s articles, please visit his columnist page.
Edited by Tim Gray