2014: Year Of Many Connections
2014 was a mixed year for the VOIP industry. According to recent research by Infonetics Research, both the service provider VOIP and IMS markets grew 5% in Q3 2014 from Q3 2013, to reach $1 billion. However, telecoms service provider VOIP and IMS equipment and subscriber revenue growth tapered over the past year.
Mitchell Barker, founder and CEO of VOIP and PBX comparison site, www.WhichVoIP.co.za, says the VOIP services market is expected to enjoy continuous growth in the coming years, due to the cost-effectiveness VOIP offers consumers and businesses alike, as well as improving network infrastructure and the rising demand for smart devices and mobility.
“The VOIP market is growing in leaps and bounds as a result of the cost benefits it offers. This is particularly important to South African businesses and consumers, who still pay too much for mobile calls – despite the interconnect rate cuts we saw this year.”
He adds that while much progress has been made in the market over the course of the past 12 months, especially in terms of cost reductions in the mobile space, there is still much to be done in order to create the right kind of competitive environment that will benefit end-users. “South Africa’s telecommunications monopolies are still hindering the growth that VOIP has seen in other countries.”
The increased interest in VOIP locally is evident in WhichVoIP’s visitor numbers, which have shown a steady increase over the past year, according to Barker. This growth in the site’s traffic indicates that South African businesses are looking for the best VOIP solutions available to them. “We have also seen a significant increase in Web leads, which confirms that e-commerce and Web services are the way of the future.”