Videoconferencing Poised to Transition from Experiment to Asset as Enterprises Weigh the Benefits and Technology Matures, According to IDC

FRAMINGHAM, MA. – March 16, 2010 – International Data Corporation (IDC) predicted that 2009 would be the year of the great enterprise videoconferencing experiment, and despite the macroeconomic challenges that enterprises faced, the worldwide market (including telepresence) managed to achieve 16.7% growth over 2008. With the global economy now in recovery, IDC expects enterprise adoption of videoconferencing to accelerate, driving revenues for videoconferencing equipment from $1.9 billion in 2009 to more than $8.7 billion in 2014.

“The videoconferencing market is in the midst of a transition – from meeting over video as an option of last resort to an alternative that's preferred over traveling”

"The videoconferencing market is in the midst of a transition – from meeting over video as an option of last resort to an alternative that's preferred over traveling," said Jonathan Edwards, research analyst, Enterprise Communications Infrastructure. "The cultural shift toward video as a good enough 'across the table' replacement for in-person meetings will accelerate swiftly through the next decade as more companies utilize the technology to accelerate decision making and time to market as well as improve team collaboration, customer service, and employee work/life balance."

IDC believes three factors will shape the enterprise videoconferencing market over the next five years:

Technology capability and market awareness. Although there is growing awareness of videoconferencing's capabilities, the technology has only recently begun to offer the quality, productivity, and level of engagement per interaction that are the keys to enterprise adoption. IP- video technology has been fundamental to this shift.

Bandwidth availability. The most significant impediment to videoconferencing adoption is bandwidth. The overall costs of investing in videoconferencing remain high, with significant network upgrades required.

Interoperability. There are multiple levels of interoperability that will take time to address (system type to system type, legacy to next generation, vendor to vendor, carrier network to carrier network, business to business, etc.), but all will significantly impact adoption and help accelerate enterprise adoption.

It is unlikely that videoconferencing will become an impromptu communication tool that is seen as an alternative to instant messaging or voice over the next five years. Instead, IDC expects the usage of videoconferencing to be primarily driven by scheduled meetings, corporate communications, and training activities. To help overcome cultural barriers to adoption, enterprises need to leverage self-service capabilities for videoconferencing assets while encouraging its use as an alternative to travel.

"Ultimately, enterprises must consider videoconferencing in the same context as larger IT initiatives and service delivery, such as virtualization, unified communications, and how video will be used beyond conferencing," added Edwards.

The IDC study, Worldwide Enterprise Videoconferencing and Telepresence 2010-2014 Forecast (Doc #221356) discusses the worldwide videoconferencing and telepresence market. Enterprise videoconferencing revenue is slated for double-digit growth through 2014, with an IDC-estimated compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 36%. Worldwide revenue estimates are provided for videoconferencing and telepresence equipment, excluding services, for the forecast period. Estimates for videoconferencing endpoints and telepresence systems and screens are also provided.

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 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 110 countries. For more than 46 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.

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