Microsoft is Leading Unified Communications Provider

www-concept-1A report published last month by TechNavio has delved into the state of the global unified communications market and used current figures to project its expansion over the next three years.

Microsoft was identified as being one of the dominant vendors thanks to the services it offers enterprise users, including Lync 2013. This puts it at the forefront of an industry that is expected to experience strong growth going forwards. Analysts believe that the compound annual growth rate (CAGR) for unified communications will have been 15.85 per cent between 2012 and the end of 2016, with a range of benefits indicated as helping to catalyze the adoption of this technology in modern businesses. In particular the availability of unified communication solutions hosted in the cloud is indicated as being a positive force in fuelling growth, since it allows companies to shift the pressure placed on internal IT infrastructures and enjoy a much more affordable and scalable third party service.

The need for significant initial investment to get unified communications services up and running is cited as being one of the obstacles to greater levels of growth, but businesses which take a considered approach using reputable, large-scale providers like Microsoft will be in the best position to make savings. A survey conducted by Infonetics Research, the results of which were published this month, also put Microsoft in the role of the dominant provider, as well as pointing to the availability of cloud-based platforms as helping with growth.

Lync is generating significant revenues for Microsoft, as well as having undergone annual growth of 30 per cent in the last year, putting it ahead of the CAGR predicted by TechNavio. Meanwhile the Infonetics finding that video conferencing is another stimulant in this marketplace shows that there are a number of significant factors holding sway over unified communications in the UK and internationally.

87 per cent of respondents to the survey said that they would be investing in video conferencing capabilities within the next 12 months, allowing them to expand on any existing UC infrastructure with fresh features. Almost a quarter of those questioned said that they were using a private cloud infrastructure to host aspects of their communications platform, with a fifth turning to public cloud services instead.

Respondents said that enabling colleague collaboration through UC was at the top of the agenda when broaching the adoption process, as well as pointing to up-front price as being an obstacle.

This article was written by HardPoint, an IT support company, certified by the major technology providers, including Cisco, Avaya and Microsoft.

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