The New Zealand Unified Communications (UC) market grew by 6.6% in 2011, despite cautious spending from organisations. This growth was mainly due to demand for voice based solutions and videoconferencing endpoints. From 2011 to 2018, Frost & Sullivan forecasts a CAGR of 9.1%, with cloud based UC or UC as a Service (UCaaS) driving widespread uptake of UC. The flexibility and reduction of maintenance overheads will be key factors driving the uptake of UCaaS.
Cloud based access makes UC available to a wider range of organisations and end users and as the model matures, security and privacy issues, which are currently the biggest concerns, will be mitigated. This shift from an on-premise to a cloud based or hosted model will be the vehicle for growth in the medium to long term. The report also indicates that although video and collaboration have been the growth engines for UC revenues in recent years, organisations rate voice based applications as the most important UC application. Enterprise telephony - both traditional and IP telephony, accounted for a major proportion of UC revenues in 2011 and although this segment will continue to be the biggest contributor to overall UC revenues, growth will begin to gradually decline as the market approaches saturation These are some of the findings from Frost & Sullivan’s latest report, New Zealand 2012 Unified Communications Market.
"Cloud based UC or UC as a Service (UCaaS) will be one of the key enabling factors that will drive widespread uptake of UC in New Zealand. Although the market has steadily improved its understanding of UCaaS, the 2011 Canterbury earthquake served as a trigger point for many organisations to evaluate the resilience of their IT infrastructure. The shortening life cycles of software applications and frequency of updates also makes management an increasingly complex and resource intensive task for organisations running on-premise solutions. The flexibility and reduction of maintenance overheads will be key factors driving the uptake of UCaaS." said Anand Balasubramanian, Industry Analyst, Australia & New Zealand ICT Practice, Frost & Sullivan.
"The New Zealand government aims to provide high speed internet to 75% of the population over a 10 year period with developments such as the Ultra-Fast Broadband (UFB) network. This time frame coincides with the maturity of cloud based delivery models, and this combination of factors will be key enabler for widespread uptake of UCaaS" Balasubramanian elaborates.
Audrey William, Head of Research, Australia and New Zealand, ICT Practice, Frost & Sullivan said that the top three vendors in the New Zealand market account for nearly half of the market. "Cisco and Microsoft are the biggest competitors, mainly due to the breadth of UC solutions offered. Both have a strong collaboration focus and leverage their expertise in networks and desktop applications to drive growth" she stated.
She continued to say that Microsoft’s Lync is emerging as a competitive force in the marketplace as it enables organisations to replace their PBX infrastructures with a software based PBX, thereby providing greater flexibility and lower maintenance overheads. "The potential of the solution is noteworthy and by integrating a range of UC applications on a single platform, Lync considerably raises Microsoft’s profile as a UC vendor" William stated.
Channel partners are being forced to re-invent themselves by the new developments in the Unified Communications market. As the momentum shifts towards managed services, hosted and cloud based solutions, channel partners will need to re-invent the way they offer services. With shrinking profit margins in the professional services segment (installation, maintenance and support), it will be critical for channel partners to offer services beyond the traditional portfolio." elaborated William.
As part of the research, Frost & Sullivan surveyed 89 IT decision makers in New Zealand to understand market behaviour and views towards Unified Communications (UC). Some of the key findings include:
• 51% of organisations use Over-The-Top (OTT) applications for some of their communications with cost savings and ease of access are the two main reasons for adopting OTT applications.
• Microsoft is considered to be the vendor offering the most complete UC solution – mainly due to the growing demand for its Lync solution and the convenience of adding additional UC capabilities to their existing Microsoft infrastructure.
• Over 50% of organisations prefer to work with Telecom New Zealand (Gen-i) for UC related services.
Frost & Sullivan's New Zealand Unified Communications Market Report 2012 report forms part of the Frost & Sullivan New Zealand Enterprise Communications program. All research services included in this subscription provide detailed market opportunities and industry trends evaluated following extensive interviews with market participants.
For media queries and more information on this study, please send an email with your contact details to Donna Jeremiah, Corporate Communications, at djeremiah[.]frost.com.
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