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Video conferencing market growth slowed by infrastructure sales

In UC news, an industry report predicts slow growth in the video conferencing market, while a study finds SMBs are embracing cloud-based tools faster than larger enterprises.

The video conferencing market will see little to no growth through 2020, as infrastructure sales decline in favor...

of cloud-based tools, according to a study from IHS Technology.

More organizations are opting for embedded, virtual and cloud-based multipoint control units over traditional video conferencing infrastructure. In the first quarter of 2016, video conferencing revenue declined 22% due to lower seasonal demand. The decrease in infrastructure sales is leading to a year-over-year downward trend for market revenue, the report found.

However, video conferencing endpoints, PBX-based video and immersive telepresence are seeing growth. Many organizations are opting for PBX-based video, such as video phones, as it offers a cost-effective way to use video communication with the infrastructure they already have.

Immersive telepresence, which had stagnated since 2011, saw growth in the video conferencing market in 2015. The growth extended to the first quarter of 2016, with revenue increasing 19% year over year.

The video conferencing market is expected to reach $3.2 billion in revenue by 2020, but will see a compound annual growth rate of 0%, according to the report.

SMBs embrace cloud-based tools

Small and medium-sized businesses are quickly adopting web- and cloud-based tools in order to do more work with fewer resources, according to a recent study.

The report, conducted by research firm Censuswide and commissioned by Unify Inc., surveyed 9,000 knowledge workers from SMBs and large organizations with more than 500 employees. The study found SMBs are more likely to use web- and cloud-based tools than larger organizations.

The consumerization of IT is felt more in SMBs, where 61% of knowledge workers reported using personal devices for work, compared with 47% of knowledge workers in larger organizations. Employees want to use devices they are comfortable with, so SMBs need to choose tools and apps that work with employee needs, according to the study.

Additionally, virtual teams are a growing trend in smaller businesses, as 47% of SMBs believe a single office as a physical workplace is less important than in the past.

"There is no technical gulf between SMBs and large organizations. [But], in many cases, SMBs are more progressive, as they are forced to do more with less, be innovative and nimble," said John DeLozier, a general manager of channels at Germany-based Unify.

Yorktel updates video collaboration platform

Yorktel has rolled out updates to Univago, its cloud video communications platform as a service. The updates aim to give users more control over the service and expand deployment options.

The new features include single sign-on to let users log into Univago within their IT environment with one set of credentials managed by their company's Active Directory services. Other updates include improved audio controls in Google Chrome, call-control capabilities for hosts and participants in web- or desktop-based meetings, and a self-test tool that allows users to test their audio and video prior to placing a call.

The update also lets Microsoft Azure customers to deploy the Univago Hybrid service in their Azure-hosted environment. The update also adds WebRTC calling in the Microsoft Edge browser.

Nectar and Sonus integrate for SBC monitoring

Nectar Services Corp. and Sonus Networks Inc. have teamed up to bring a session border controller (SBC) monitoring service to organizations with SIP-based unified communications (UC) deployments. The integrated service, called Unified Communications Diagnostics, combines Nectar's UC Management Platform with Sonus's SBC 1000 and SBC 2000.

The UC Diagnostics system reduces the number of services required to provide deep diagnostics monitoring for enterprises deploying SIP-based UC, like Microsoft Skype for Business, with SBC infrastructure.

The integration allows organizations to monitor SBCs at remote sites from a centrally located data center. It offers scalability that allows organizations to add new sites to monitor through the Sonus SBCs.

Nemertes Research analyst Irwin Lazar said IP telephony and UC costs are on the rise for most organizations, as "they struggle to reduce mean time to repair and proactively prevent service issues before they occur." Third-party management tools, such as the UC Diagnostics system, result in operational cost savings for organizations.

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