The market for business fixed-mobile convergence has been slow to materialize over the past several years but is starting to gain ground in Europe in 2010, according to new research from International Data Corporation (IDC).
“Many business benefits from increased mobile working have not been fully realized because many firms lack centralized cost control, visibility, and efficiency across their fixed and mobile environments,” said Nicholas McQuire, research director, EMEA Enterprise Mobility. “In the past, FMC sought to address these challenges but it failed to do so on a wide scale because it was complex, expensive, and limited in terms of the user experience and business case. We are finally starting to see some of these barriers coming down with best practices emerging and generating decent commercial momentum in the market as a result.”
According to IDC, telephony-based FMC is the first phase of mobile unified communications driven primarily by the business need for greater cost reduction and control of mobile voice. Growing maturity of service provider portfolios, the emergence of specific customer and sector drivers, and increased evidence of commercial success in Europe are progressing FMC quickly and will evolve the market to its second phase, where the emergence of integrated collaboration applications such as presence and instant messaging will significantly improve the communications experience for business users. In time, mobility extensions will become standard in most unified communications modules and will emerge as a strong contributor to the UCC business case for customers.