Cisco, Polycom and Avaya make hardware to let enterprises to video conference, but the arrival of cloud computing means they’re likely to see flat growth.
That’s the conclusion of Eric Abbruzzese, research analyst at ABI Research, whose video conference hardware doesn’t quite cut the ice.
He said: “With the current market focus on cloud computing and hardware virtualisation, dedicated hardware sales will see little growth in all video delivery markets, including videoconferencing telepresence hardware.”
He said hardware revenues are likely to be more or less flat up to 2020 but the Ciscos of this world will have little luck selling kit if products don’t adopt to a virtualisation model.
He said the three firms in question have already begun to move to cloud based systems and using their existing products as a foundation for the cloud services.
Aside from the enterprise, video conferencing for us plebs will show strong growth. Skype, ooVoo and Google Hangouts will all have their place in the sun.
Computer companies have been touting video calling as the perfect way to hold conference calls and important conferences since the 1990s, but now it seems it’s all happening under their noses.
A Gartner report said that over a third of people aged 18 or over now use their smartphones to make video calls.
And the number increases if you count people under the age of 18, it appears.
Gartner surveyed 6,500 smartphone users in Germany and the USA earlier this year and estimates that 50 million people in America use their smartphones to make video calls. It also estimates that over eight million adult smartphone users in Germany do the same.
Software used includes Apple’s FaceTime, Microsoft’s Skype and Google’s Hangouts.
Gartner senior research analyst Atsuro Sato reckons that although the US results show higher penetration than Germany, it shows the shape of things to come in other territories too.
He said: “We believe one of the use cases that has seemed marginal for some time now warrants much greater attention.”