Video conferencing is fast moving from being a standalone collaboration tool to an integrated part of unified communications (UC) solutions, with strong web and mobile capabilities.
"Video conferencing customers and prospects have a range of new offerings to choose from, but also the challenge of figuring out which solution is most appropriate for them," observes Rich Costello, senior research analyst, Enterprise Communications Infrastructure, IDC, "Selecting a vendor solution should be based on several factors, including whether vendors meet the organizational criteria for audio/video functionality, interoperability, contextual collaboration, ease-of-use, cost savings and benefits, and the ability to integrate with UC portfolios and business applications, among other criteria."
Vendors offer a range of deployment options for customers today (on-premises, managed, hosted, cloud, and hybrid), either directly or through channel partners, helping to alleviate some of these challenges.
The global market for video conferencing equipment and services, in terms of revenue, is expected to expand at a CAGR of 8.5 percent from 2015 to 2023. The market is largely driven by the growing globalization of business organizations, coupled with the need for scalable communication methods. The increasing need to lower operational costs and effectively manage a global supply chain is another significant factor driving the global video conferencing market. In addition to corporate enterprises, increasing adoption of video conferencing services in the public sector and healthcare verticals is further expected to drive the growth of the market during the coming years.
User demand for video communications has been accelerating, which is enabling the market to reach a tipping point. The proliferation of mobile devices, combined with an unending appetite to consume video content and associated services, has been a big driver for boosting adoption of video communications including video conferencing.
With the onset of consumerization, user expectations have shifted greatly. While exploding consumer use of video is feeding the demand for video communications at work, it sets the bar high for technology providers to match consumer expectations of easy-to-use, light-weight applications with frictionless user experience over connected devices.
The distinction between video and web conferencing is fast diminishing. Most web conferencing solutions now offer rich video conferencing while video-centric vendors are enhancing content sharing and collaboration. It is expected that in a few years, the two solutions will look almost identical in features and price, effectively competing for the same user base.
As collaboration becomes increasingly integrated with business applications, vendors are focusing on building open and extensible platforms and a wide network of developer partners to enable video communications into custom work flows.