Q

VoIP in 2009?

Where do you see the VoIP market heading in 2009?

I know that VoIP has already changed the telecommunications market and landscape considerably, but do you think it will continue to do so in the future? Where do you see the VoIP market heading in 2009?
VoIP is far from done in terms of its market impact. While it has gained substantial awareness recently, by most accounts, VoIP's market share can only be measured in single digits. However, its underlying impact on the overall landscape has been much greater, and VoIP is now recognized as the de facto standard for where telecom is going.

The vast majority of new telephony systems and network investments are VoIP-based, and over the next few years, as the installed base of legacy telephony turns over, the market share for VoIP will rapidly increase. For business users, VoIP will continue to gain ground in 2009, and you will start to see it used in new ways.

For most of us, business VoIP means IP telephony, which is easy to tell by the growing presence of IP phones popping up on desktops these days. However, in 2009, you can expect to see VoIP being used more often in other areas as well. Three examples come to mind right away. First is web-based calling, which can take many forms. Making a voice call on Skype is one, and that's a form of VoIP. Another would be click-to-call applications embedded in web sites or your Outlook directory. A second example – related to this – is the use of softphones. This is a desktop application developed specifically to make VoIP calls from your computer, and will work wherever you have a broadband connection. The third example is mobility. While the market is not quite ready for mobile VoIP, business users are increasingly discovering ways of making these calls over WiFi with their smartphones. These devices are becoming much more popular – and affordable – now, and with that, you can expect to see a lot more mobile calling over WiFi in 2009.

This was first published in December 2008
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