Since 2010, the EMEA IP PBX and IP telephone markets have been reinvigorated after the decline that started in autumn 2008, according to a new study by International Data Corporation (IDC). The study pointed out, however, that in the next few years growth rates will be more modest than in 2010.
Combined EMEA revenue from enterprise IP PBX and IP telephone sales will exceed $5.1 billion in 2015, growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 11.9% between 2010 and 2015.
The study singles out three key issues for the EMEA IP PBX and IP telephone markets:
• Network equipment upgrades. Businesses will need to replace obsolete voice platforms (whether TDM or IP), which will constitute the baseline of the EMEA IP telephony equipment market until 2015.
• Integration of IP telephony equipment with unified communication and collaboration (UC&C). IP PBX systems that can carry UC&C will become part of strategic investments in technologies enhancing key business processes and enabling new, flexible ways of working.
• Economic climate. Current profits and prospects for future business growth ultimately depend on the readiness (or not) of businesses to spend on IP telephony equipment. A negative economic climate, therefore, may be a major inhibitor to this market.
But what if economic prospects worsen, with, for example, another recession? “IDC is convinced that IP voice technology has a lot to offer, even if EMEA faces a return to recession. But if a double-dip recession occurs, the game will alter markedly for vendors. The requirements of their customers, the needs of their partners, and the threats from their competitors will change dramatically,” said study author Michael Vorisek, senior research analyst, Communications and Networking.
Under such conditions, sales of IP telephony and UC&C platforms would benefit from the dynamic rise in flexible working in Western Europe. On the other hand, said Vorisek, “As cost optimization would be the absolute priority of customers, vendors would need to focus on this and work on optimizing the standing portfolio in terms of performance, reliability, and production costs.”