Australian companies are almost certain to increase their adoption of internet protocol (IP) telephony over the next few years, according to a new report by research analysts, Frost & Sullivan.
The report claims that traditional business phone systems, using conventional telephone lines, have outlived their usefulness in the modern communications environment, and that a continued cross-over to IP telephony is almost inevitable.
The move to IP telephony, the report says, will form part and parcel of what it predicts will be a growing shift in Australia towards unified communications (UC); whereby communications via different media can be accessed through a single interface by the recipient.
In addition, Frost & Sullivan predict that modification of existing communication lines via session initiation protocol (SIP) trunking will also have a major part to play in the future development of UC in Australia. This is because SIP trunking can help facilitate greater compatibility between different communications sources without the need for major infrastructure replacement programmes.
The demand for UC in Australia will be led, the report says, by such trends as the increased routine use of video conferencing; a greater use of mobile phones by employees and customers alike; piggybacking by businesses on social network sites; and the desire for greater staff mobility among both staff and management.
At the same time, the report indicates that many businesses are worried about installing UC-related equipment within their own premises, based on fears that a natural disaster – similar to the recent floods in Queensland – could easily jeopardise business continuity.
As a consequence, the report says, there will be an increasing emphasis on using remote host services for UC, such as those provided by a business VoIP provider or VoIP reseller. Such host services can of course also assist those businesses worried about the costs of installing UC and IP telephony equipment in-house.