Even before the year had ended, data from Infonetics Research suggested 2013 was the year of carrier VoIP and IMS. Now the research firm’s numbers for the fourth quarter of last year have been released, providing a more complete picture of the year, and further underscoring the fact that the market saw strong growth throughout last year.
Indeed, the Service Provider VoIP and IMS Equipment and Subscribers report for the fourth quarter and full year paints a positive picture. For the full year, worldwide service provider VoIP and IMS equipment revenue was up 30 percent from 2012, landing at $3.7 billion.
Breaking it down geographically, spending was particularly strong in the U.S., China and Japan — areas with large mobile markets and competitive operators. Even outside of these countries, though, there was strong growth across the board in 2013. This may have to do with the fact that fixed-line transformation projects played a significant role last year as there was a good amount of spending on class 5 replacement and expansion of voice over broadband (VoBB) and SIP.
As for the vendors included in Infonetics’ report, Alcatel-Lucent, BroadSoft, Ericsson, Genband, Huawei, Metaswitch, NEC, NSN, Oracle/Acme Packet, Sonus and ZTE were tracked, among others.
“The market for carrier VoIP and IMS shined in 2013 as mobile operators ramped for voice over LTE (VoLTE), and Huawei, Alcatel-Lucent, Ericsson, and NSN rode the wave, each putting up impressive 20 percent+ year-over-year growth,” said Diane Myers, principal analyst for VoIP, UC, and IMS at Infonetics Research. “Though there’s still room for pure-play vendors and product specialists, the large equipment manufacturers benefit from long-standing relationships with mobile operators and broad product portfolios that extend well beyond carrier VoIP and IMS.”
Unfortunately, all of this growth isn’t expected to continue in 2014. In fact, Infonetics expects it to taper off as operators “launch services and draw down significant inventory.”