Unified communications as a Service (UCaaS) and hosted PBX will see a spike in market penetration in the coming years as businesses continue to move their processes to the cloud—with big ramifications for market disruption on the horizon.
A survey BroadSoft estimates that new lines shipped will increase nearly sixfold, or 41 percent, over the next five years. And far from being a niche phenomenon, the survey points to a rapid shift away from traditional premise systems across all market segments.
By 2020, the cloud UC market penetration is expected to grow threefold in the large enterprise segment, seven times in the midmarket segment, and almost fivefold in the small business segment, according to survey results.
All of this will lead to significant disruption for market players when it comes to business adoption of cloud and mobile UC solutions, the evolving competitive landscape, and the extent to which emerging, over-the-top (OTT) team messaging and collaboration applications are disrupting current business productivity tools such as email.
For one, enterprises are cutting the cord; and, UC and mobility will become synonymous. According to the survey, in addition to the shift from premise to cloud, 42 percent of respondents believe that more than half of UC interactions for businesses of all sizes will occur via mobile devices by 2020, while one-third of small businesses will opt for mobile-only UCaaS/hosted PBX solutions, eliminating their need for desk phones.
Email is also on the way out, which will unlock new opportunities for service provider revenue growth. A full 82 percent of survey respondents expect OTT integrated messaging and collaboration applications to disrupt the business email market, while only 18 percent feel email will remain the primary business-messaging tool.
"Enterprise UCaaS is proving disruptive due to its superior value proposition -- reduced complexity, lower total cost of ownership and greater productivity and mobility for the increasingly millennial and distributed workforce," said Taher Behbehani, CMO at BroadSoft. "Importantly, this opportunity is not lost on service providers and industry leaders as 90 percent of survey respondents rate UCaaS/Hosted PBX as their preferred technology solution strategy, while only 10 percent are leading sales efforts with premise PBX."