New IDC MarketScape Provides a Vendor Assessment of the Worldwide Unified Communications Voice Infrastructure Market

FRAMINGHAM, Mass., January 4, 2012 – International Data Corporation (IDC) has published a new vendor assessment and market analysis profiling the leading providers in the worldwide unified communications (UC) voice infrastructure market. The IDC MarketScape report utilizes a rigorous scoring methodology that produces a definitive assessment of each vendor's current market capabilities and strategies for competing in the future. IDC placed two vendors – Cisco and Avaya – in the Leaders category for 2011/2012 with several others, including Microsoft, Alcatel-Lucent (ALU), Siemens, NEC, IBM, and ShoreTel, recognized as Major Players.

Although this UC IDC MarketScape is voice-centric (more weight given to telephony), it also takes into account each vendor's whole UC portfolio. This is a new level of detail from last year's IDC MarketScape, which only considered the voice/telephony piece.

From a business perspective, unified communications continues to face challenges. "Customers still struggle to justify the deployment of UC and calculate its overall ROI," said Rich Costello, senior research analyst, Enterprise Communications Infrastructure. "It's an ongoing effort for customers to understand and identify appropriate business cases for UC and the overall complexities associated with it. But, once that connection is made, UC delivers." In order to be successful, the industry must continue to develop incremental business use cases to build confidence among customers and drive investments in UC. Vendors and partners must also focus on the business case, and not just the technical aspects, of a fully integrated UC environment.

Additional findings from the report include the following:

Customers must identify tools and features that are most appropriate for their organization, and which source(s) they should turn to for those selected features and tools.

SIP trunking is finally gaining real momentum among carriers.

Some of the most powerful UC customer success stories emanate from business process flows within vertical markets such as healthcare, education, financials, manufacturing, etc.

A business case for UC has to include a mix of IT and business benefits.

The IDC study, IDC MarketScape: Worldwide Unified Communications Voice Infrastructure 2011-2012 Vendor Analysis (IDC #232152), is a vendor assessment of the telephony/UC market utilizing the IDC MarketScape model. This assessment discusses both quantitative and qualitative characteristics that explain success in this growing market. The report covers a variety of vendors participating in the telephony/UC market. The evaluation is based on a comprehensive and rigorous framework that assesses vendors relative to the criteria and one another and highlights the factors expected to be the most influential to success in the market, both short and long term.

The vendors included in the analysis are Aastra, Alcatel-Lucent, Avaya, Cisco, Digium, Huawei, IBM, Interactive Intelligence, Microsoft, Mitel, NEC, ShoreTel, and Siemens Enterprise Communications (SEN).

About IDC MarketScape

IDC MarketScape vendor analysis model is designed to provide an overview of the competitive fitness of ICT (information and communications technology) suppliers in a given market. The research methodology utilizes a rigorous scoring methodology based on both qualitative and quantitative criteria that results in a single graphical illustration of each vendor’s position within a given market. IDC MarketScape provides a clear framework in which the product and service offerings, capabilities and strategies, and current and future market success factors of IT and telecommunications vendors can be meaningfully compared. The framework also provides technology buyers with a 360-degree assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of current and prospective vendors.

For more information about IDC MarketScape, please contact Karen Moser at kmoser@idc.com.

About IDC

International Data Corporation (IDC) is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology, telecommunications, and consumer technology markets. IDC helps IT professionals, business executives, and the investment community to make fact-based decisions on technology purchases and business strategy. More than 1,000 IDC analysts provide global, regional, and local expertise on technology and industry opportunities and trends in over 100 countries. For more than 47 years, IDC has provided strategic insights to help our clients achieve their key business objectives. IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world's leading technology media, research, and events company. You can learn more about IDC by visiting www.idc.com.