Gartner said instant messaging systems have moved from the technological fringe to become a key part of an enterprise’s collaboration infrastructure, and are increasingly displacing existing forms of communications, from ad hoc telephone calls and e-mails to pre-planned meetings and video conferences.
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By 2013, says the analyst, 95% of workers in leading global organisations will be using IM as their primary interface for real-time communications.
In terms of revenue, says Gartner, the worldwide market for enterprise IM is forecast to grow from £140m in 2005 to £362m in 2010.
“Although consumer IM use has been predominant in business, we expect penetration levels for enterprise-grade IM to rise from around 25% currently to nearly 100% by the end of the decade,” said David Mario Smith, an analyst at Gartner.
Gartner advocates the use of enterprise grade IM from vendors including IBM and Microsoft to ensure that IM traffic is secure behind the firewall.
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