The evolution of IP telephony and high-speed broadband services (wireless and wired) are changing the dynamics in the education vertical, especially in terms of bandwidth. Access to real-time video applications such as streaming video inside the classroom is compelling service providers to focus on meeting the need for high-speed networks.
Frost & Sullivan finds that the U.S. Education Vertical Communication Services earned revenues of $8.64 billion in 2005 and estimates this to reach $12.52 billion in 2012.
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“The increasing use of visual technology for instructional purposes is driving growth in bandwidth requirements,” notes Frost & Sullivan Industry Analyst Roopa Shree. “This drives the need for fiber networks as opposed to traditional networks, such as T1 links that may not be able to meet the increasing bandwidth demand.”
Flexibility in bandwidth scalability, convergence of networks, familiarity of Ethernet protocols at the LAN level, and the associated cost benefits are likely to drive the implementation of fiber optic networks.
In fact, institutions in the K-12 as well as higher education market segments are increasing their expenditure on fiber optic solutions (native LAN, switched Ethernet and Gigabit Ethernet) for internetworking. In addition to reducing download times, these solutions help educational institutions curb maintenance costs due to the consolidation of network equipment.
“Higher education institutions are also adopting VoIP in an effort to slash long-term telecom costs, ease management issues, and consolidate digital traffic on a single network infrastructure,” explains Shree.
Overall, service providers that offer services such as dedicated Internet access, data transport services, conferencing services, networking and others are most likely to make a strong impact on the higher education market segment.
Internet services are also witnessing a surge in demand due to increasing Internet demos and on-line class exercises. Videoconferencing, streaming video, electronic field trips and need to access other educational portals are increasing the demand for data transport and access services.
Network security and disaster recovery planning are some of the other areas holding tremendous potential. Off-site data backup/recovery solutions are hugely popular, especially among higher education institutions that handle large amounts of research-related data.
Wireless transport services are also gaining momentum with the evolution of technologies such as Evolution Data Optimized and WiMAX that are capable of offering high-speed wireless broadband connections.
“As the market gradually shifts toward next-generation networks, carriers will have to partner with content providers, equipment vendors, and software vendors to cover a wide range of applications as well as address niche market areas,” concludes Shree.
U.S. Education Vertical Communication Services, a part of the Communications Services Subscription, provides a market analysis for communication services in the U.S. education vertical. The study thoroughly examines wireline voice, wireline data and wireless voice and data services across K-12 as well as higher education segments and offers an analysis of key market drivers, restraints, and trends that are impacting the education vertical spending on telecom services. It includes detailed market opportunities and industry trends evaluated following extensive interviews with market participants. Analyst interviews are available to the press.
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U.S. Education Vertical Communication Services