The Global Unified Communications as a Service Market is expected to witness significant growth over forecast year. Rising penetration of bringing your own device (BYOD) in professional institutions & organizations, coupled with high adoption of mobile devices are expected to fuel the market growth. Other driving factors include increasing collaboration and communications technology outsourcing and growing dependency on IP networks and services among third party users.
UCS is an integrated communication package that is built into one single module. The package bundling includes real-time communication services such as data sharing, call controlling, voice over IP (VoIP) telephony, instant messaging, video conferencing and other package services such as SMS, email, fax, and voicemail. UCS has gained importance in extensive and exhaustive applications both for business and local services. The UCS package can unify and automate the user experience across many devices. Numerous IT-dependent enterprises struggle to keep up pace with quick technological changes. The growing trend of IT-consumerization has fostered workforce management evolution via BYOD and similar trends such as bring your own PC (BYOPC), bring your own technology (BYOT), and bring your own phone (BYOP).
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This concept helps to connect personal devices such as a laptop, PCs, smartphones and tablets to an organization’s vertical network, which helps the employee to gain network access from remote locations through their own devices. This has led to greater operational, organizational and financial benefits. A major driving force behind BYOD is the new attitude of self-sufficiency IT among the employees who already own their personal gadgets. Rapid adoption of iPads, lightweight ultrabooks and wide screened laptops are paving the way for BYOD adoption across several workstations. There are different types of UCS such as presence technology and enterprise messaging, video conferencing, telephony and online meetings. Growing adoption of UCS mainly from service enterprises for core business tasks owing to flexibility, scalability and high level of availability (HA) are likely to boost market demand over the forecast period.
The global UCS market is segmented on the basis of product, application and region. Product outlook includes cloud-based or hosted unified communications and on-premise unified communication. The application outlook includes several industry verticals as end users such as healthcare, enterprises, government, education and others. The regional classification of the global market includes North America, Asia Pacific, Europe and rest of the world (RoW). Cloud-based UCS has taken over on-premises technology and several businesses have adopted cloud-based communications and phased out on-premises technology owing to several reasons. These include low CAPEX of hosted & cloud-based UCS, lower capital expenditure and negligible hardware costs except for personalized phones.
However, businesses dependent on on-premise UCS are expected to witness larger CAPEX costs which include several expenses such as rack space, hardware, cooling, power, and others. Hosted UCS is characterized by low installation costs; whereas on-premise UCS involves high costs owing to hardware installation costs and contract staff payments. Migration strategy is best suited to cloud-based or host UCS technology, owing to higher flexibility of adding or removing several features, rolling out new functionalities and revaluating system deployments. However, on-premise UCS needs a complete infrastructural replacement owing to lack of upstream scalability and robustness. This can result in communication troubleshooting and downtime.
Several on-premises UCS take a longer period of time, sometimes even a year to roll out company-wide implementation. The cloud-based UCS function resides in the data center of the network service provider owing to monthly fee backend infrastructure, however, on-premise infrastructure may vary based on vendor breed and sometimes administration and management functions. In 2015, enterprises accounted for over 50% of the global UCS market demand owing to high adoption of IT business, mobility solutions, and other benefits such as the presence of advanced collaboration technology. This application segment is likely to retain the largest market from 2016 to 2024, as several enterprises are expected to adopt better operational agility which will further boost future market growth.
The government, education, and healthcare are other sectors which are expected to witness significant growth in demand for UCS implementation owing to improved government process and efficiencies and rising government expenditure on advanced IT solutions. UCS demand in government applications is anticipated to grow at an exponential CAGR of over 17.5% over the forecast period. In 2015, North America accounted for over 50% of the global demand and it is likely to retain the largest market share both by volume and revenue, owing to the high popularity of BYOD solutions and presence of several key players.
Europe and Asia are expected to witness significant growth in global UCS market, owing to the need for effective collaboration, communication and low-cost implementation. China and India are likely to generate highest service demand in Asia Pacific, owing to a burgeoning population and growing need for high-speed data networks. However stringent telecom regulations from India, Vietnam, Indonesia and China are expected to restrain market growth over the forecast period. Key market players include Cisco Systems, NEC Corp., Polychom Inc., Alcatel – Lucent, Microsoft Corp, Unify GMBH, and Verizon Communications. Cisco is dominating the current competitive landscape, owing to high dependency of major Fortune 500 companies on the former’s technological solutions.
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