Big increase in unified communications take-up as sales reach £191m


Big increase in unified communications take-up as sales reach £191m

Antony Savvas

More businesses are buying unified communications products. Worldwide sales have increased by 21% between 2005 and 2006, to £191m, according to analyst Infonetics Research.


Matthias Machowinski, a directing analyst at Infonetics Research, said, "Unified communications is the buzz du jour in our industry, but there are a lot of different ideas out there for what it actually is.


“What everyone seems to agree on though, is that there are two key components that form the cornerstone of unified communications: unified messaging, which stores all message types, and communicator, a presence-enabled directory that shows contact availability by communication mode. A true UC user will have both,” he said.


Infonetics also said that worldwide sales of IP contact centre applications - including automatic call distribution, interactive voice response, and computer telephony integration - totalled £253m in 2006, a 26% increase over 2005.


Avaya is the leader in the worldwide unified messaging market by sales, said Infonetics. But its top competitors, including Nortel, Cisco and Alcatel-Lucent (in that order), are gaining fast, said the analyst.


Alcatel-Lucent is the market share leader for worldwide communicator sales, and Siemens and Avaya are neck and neck close behind.


In the IP contact centre market, Avaya leads, followed by Cisco, Alcatel-Lucent and Nortel.


Customer service and unified communications pain points for UK >>


Unified communications: devising a winning strategy >>


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