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Cavell is beginning latest round of research on the UK Hosted VoIP and SIP Trunking markets July 7, 2016

Posted by Dominic Black in VoIP Numbers.
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Cavell is commencing our latest round of research on the Hosted VoIP and SIP Trunking markets and is looking for input from Service Providers into our survey. As many of you are aware, the data that is inputed for our research is used to build a total market picture for the VoIP and SIP markets across the UK and individual company data is confidential.

Cavell will be running a webinar in August to go over the top level findings with those companies that have contributed to the survey and will receive discount codes to our upcoming European VoIP Summits.

Please follow the links for each survey below, each one should take around 5 minutes and your input is greatly appreciated

Hosted VoIP

SIP Trunking

If you would like to discuss this research or speak to one of our analysts, please contact Dominic Black at dominic.black@cavellgroup.com


GoDaddy enters the VoIP communications space with acquisition of FreedomVoice May 19, 2016

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GoDaddy have acquired FreedomVoice, a US based VoIP Provider, to deliver voice services to their portfolio of services tailored towards SME customers. With 14m customer globally, GoDaddy has a huge opportunity to cross sell services to these customers and recognises that voice communications solutions are key to SME customers and this acquisition will enable them to target their customers effectively.

FreedomVoice cost GoDaddy a reported $42 million in cash plus up to $5 million in potential future milestones payments with most of the team remaining with FreedomVoice. With over 200,000 SME customers, the synergies between the two companies are clear. It will be interesting to see whether GoDaddy can find ways to use technologies like WebRTC to deliver integrated voice products into their current solutions to really deliver an differentiated voice product to their customers.

Read about the acquisition here

Genband Perspectives 2016: Contextual Communications, Disruptors, the Future of Service Providers, CPaaS and Kandy May 13, 2016

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David Walsh saw the rise of Contextual Communications being one of the drivers of increased communication. His belief that by enabling people to communicate with whatever device and through any application that they want will increase the level of communications between parties which will in turn facilitate collaboration and increased productivity.

XO, the largest SIP Trunking provider in the USA, gave a good example of this with their Contact Center solution which use the Kandy platform with WebRTC integrations to allow customers to contact them using any medium that they want, be it voice, email, IM or video. By giving customers the choice of communication, they are able to improve the customer experience and address the customers’ needs – a key priority for contact centres.

Disruptors are driving innovation as companies look for ways to stay relevant in their industry

Katrina Troughton says that IBM are seeing that business leaders are facing more challenges then ever before. With the lifespan of Fortune 500 companies dropping under 15 years due to disruption, CEOs are looking at ways that they can keep their employees engaged and stay relevant in today’s market. There is a big push for companies to innovate to survive but many find it difficult to do so as they don’t have the skills.

This is relevant to VoIP providers as an increasing homogenisation of products, where differentiation is around pricing and features, is becoming ubiquitous across the board. As the Service Providers have a great understanding of their customers, as they work with them on a daily basis and understand their challenges, they are in an unique position to be able to give them the tools to communicate and enable greater collaboration.

What will a Service Provider look like in the future?

The issue for Service Providers is that they have generally been poor at creating their own applications as they do not have the development skills to create solutions for their customers, as their focus is around providing a voice service, not enabling collaboration. Roy Timor-Russo of Genband thinks that Genband will be able to fill that role of adding value with their apps and knowledge of what has worked for other Service Providers in other markets and alongside the Service Providers core voice competency.

Genband see their position in the market is providing the platform for application developers to integrate their features into. As one of the first movers into the CPaaS (Communications Platform as a Service), the Kandy platform was built to allow developers to build applications for Service Providers, Enterprises and Vendors to quicken the time to market. David Walsh highlighted in the press conference at the end of the first day the need for all members of the telecoms ecosystem to be able to ‘Fail Quick’ with new features and that long development times do not always translate into successful stories. 90% of applications built will not be a success but there needs to be an acceptance and understanding that failure will yield results.


It is still unclear what role Service Providers will play in the future, whether they will simply be running dumb ‘pipes’ or their customer will be facing background, meaning that they are well positioned to understand their customers needs and build the solutions to fit certain business verticals. What will be interesting is whether there will be a demand for a basic VoIP/UC solution in the future and how Service Providers will be able to cope with an increasingly development driven approach.

Is Kandy going to be future?

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We have seen a number of CPaaS providers appear over the last few years and it is still not clear who will emerge as a success. What is interesting and will be a challenge for Genband going down the route of Kandy and CPaaS is how they will maintain revenues in the future as customers adopt a ‘Click to Consume’ model, choosing only the applications that are relevant to themselves. From a company that is used to selling large CAPEX solutions, making a move to tight margins on applications over a base price of $2/user/month may prove difficult in the short term. Genband have created a good story with the Kandy platform and it will be interesting to see how the CPaaS ecosystem progresses in the future.

Hosted VoIP Market grows as SMEs embrace technology March 10, 2014

Posted by Dominic Black in Uncategorized.
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In illumes latest Hosted VoIP/UC report, we saw a return to strong growth with the market growing at 12% in the last 6 months to reach 1,296,266 users by the end of 2013. This growth was fuelled by both a continued growth in number of providers with illume now tracking over 80 companies with particular growth focused on the SME segment of the market.

 We are also seeing significant market announcements from providers servicing the Large Enterprise segment including; Kingston Communications, BT Global Services, Fujitsu and Virgin but these have yet to materialize into significant new deployed seats although we expect this in coming months. The last 12 months have been a very interesting period as the market has seen a number of new entrants from oversea and also it is wrestling with the value it can drive from Unified Communications functions and capabilities.

Today illume launches its new Hosted VoIP Market reports and forecast. If you are looking to purchase a report please contact Dominic Black at dominic.black@illumeresearch.com and look at http://www.illumeresearch.com/shop-research.html for more information on the reports we offer.

UK IP/SIP Market Continue to Grow Strongly February 12, 2013

Posted by Matthew Townend in Uncategorized.
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illume completed its survey of VoIP Service provider in January, the survey showed that the SIP/IP trunking market shows no sign of slowing down with growth of 25% June-December 2012. The market was 757,928 trunks at the end of 2012, a growth of 60% year on year.

The survey saw strong performance among key players in the market and an increasing focus from Softswitch vendors such as Broadsoft, Genband & Cisco on the need for their story to incorporate SIP/IP trunks alongside Hosted services.

We explored with the providers what were the key customer drivers and although costs versus ISDN is still the most important there is an increasing understanding that other benefits such as “Flexibility” & “Business Continuity” are also key.  Among the providers serving the larger enterprises we also saw the importance of SIPT as an enabler for Unified Communications growing in importance.  

In the coming year we expect to see more focus on what applications can be layered on top of a SIP trunk,  and how Services Providers can really address Hybrid Hosted & SIP environments and bring benefits of Unified Communications to both traditional PBX & hybrid customer scenarios.

This year we saw a number of new entrants in to the SIP market and a number of new announcements. In December we saw the launch from Talk Talk business of their “Next Generation ISDN30 service” which caught our eye. In effect this service utilises a SIP network and a gateway to deliver a customer the choice to terminate; ISDN, SIP or a mix of channels, bringing the customer some of the flexibility and service benefits associated with SIP to a traditional ISDN environment. We have seen this approach used in other international markets; recently we have been working in the South African market where a number of competitors to Telkom used this approach to attack existing ISDN market, effectively offering like for like services.

One of the other issues on everybody’s lips has been what the impact of Microsoft Lync is, our survey showed that less than 20% of providers had tested with Lync. The providers who have been approved for Lync, indicated that although they had seem some business coming through it was still a relatively small percentage of their overall base, although having the capability had opened up a number of customer discussion they may not have had if they were unable to offer such a capability. Microsoft are clearly generating a lot of enterprise interest behind Lync but its still unclear if it will really replace the PBX.

2013 Forecast & Report

illume and its parent company Cavell are investing in its research capability this year and plan to expand its portfolio and team . On the 19th of February we will launch our annual Hosted VoIP Forecast and report & our SIP/IP trunking report & forecast both of which will enter into more detail on the issues discussed above as well as providing our forecast for the market. If you would like to find out more about Cavell or our research capabilities please visit www.cavellgroup.com or email Matt Townend matthew.townend@cavellgroup.com

Broadsoft Xtended Connect could indicate a major change in the wholesale market! October 30, 2012

Posted by Matthew Townend in Uncategorized.
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On October 22nd BroadSoft  www.Broadsoft.com announced Xtended Connect with its partner Intelepeer www.IntelePeer.com . Xtended connect is in practice a federation which its customers can join to share traffic both HD Voice and Video, without having to use a wholesale partner.

So for example if a Broadsoft Service Provider customer in the UK (Provider A) and a Broadsoft Service Provider customer in India (Provider B) joined the federation, any voice or video traffic which was going between an end customer on Provider A and an end customer on Provider Bs network could pass for free, and therefore avoid traditional whole providers networks. Also because both service providers are utilising the Broadsoft platform they could pass the traffic as HD Voice or Video as they utilise the same applications. In order to make this work they have chosen to partner with Intelepeer who will provide the points of presence and the registry capability which will identify if traffic is On-net between Broadsoft federation customers.

This is not the first federation we have seen but is significant that a major vendor should embark on such a strategy. Xconnect (www.xconnect.net) who are one of the other pioneers in this market, have been empowering federations between VoIP and other players for a number of years and recently announced a NGN exchange with DE-CIX in Germany. Indeed Xconnect have demonstrated very strong growth offering these services both on a national and international basis.

What’s interesting is in their announcement Broadsoft highlighted the service benefits that customers will receive, rather than any financial benefit.

“Today, service providers are primarily limited to supporting high-definition calls for customers within their own network, which means that the vision of a superior communication experience has yet to be realized,” said Michael Tessler, president and CEO, BroadSoft. “When every BroadSoft service provider customer leverages Xtended Connect, BroadSoft powered users in more than 70 countries will experience high-definition voice and video calling, creating a truly high-definition network.”

For a global or national federation to work there must be enough On-net traffic to demonstrate real value. Broadsoft do have a significant global market presence which could drive enough global and local traffic.  At launch however the pops are limited to the US and 1 in the UK, in the coming months Intelepeer will extend that reach and only then will we really see if this has a significant global impact. The commercial model for such services will develop other the coming months; however it appears that a provider will have to commit to take other services from Intelepeer, in order to benefit from the free On-net federation services.

We would also expect this to encourage global teaming between Broadsoft customer. For instance if a partner in the UK had a multinational customer with site requirements in India, he may work with a Broadsoft federation provider in India to provide that site. Then he will be able to offer his customer a HD Video and Voice experience.

Will Wholesale Providers Loose Sleep !!

I don’t think this announcement will make wholesale players, loose sleep yet. However it is a clear demonstration how the future requirements for delivery of Voice/Video and other UC services elements, maybe a key driver of what the future wholesale offering may need to be. Also we may start to see closer teaming between vendors and service providers in these market spaces and the delivery of applications becomes more and more important.

illume and Cavells customers are looking for both research and consulting assistance on this area of the market, so if you are interestd in where we could help please contact matthew.townend@cavellgroup.com

IP Trunks growth accelerates to 456.000 trunks February 9, 2012

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illume latest research showed that at the end of 2011 the IP trunks market reaches 456,000 trunks in the UK, demonstrating an annual market growth of around 98% in 2011.

This was slightly behind illumes forecast, one of the main issues was illume forecasted that BT Business would have entered the market by nowected entry to the market by the likes of BT Business. However BT business are now , however it is clear they are now looking to take on customers to trial their SIP trunking service http://business.bt.com/broadband-and-internet/leased-lines/sip-voice-trunking/ implying that the launch will be soon.

The other interesting trend we are seeing is the growth in the use of SBC Session Border Controllers in the deployment of enterprise SIP trunks. A recent interview with one of the large SBC players indicated that upwards of 20% of revenue was now being generated from Enterprise customers.

illume will be publishing its annual report and forecast on the SIP trunk market at the end of February, where we will explore the market trends in more detail.

12 Countries in 12 months but common Themes December 31, 2011

Posted by Matthew Townend in Uncategorized.
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This year has been very busy for illume, and has lead us to travelling to 12 countries including interesting places such as Nigeria, Palestine and South Korea. Interestingly whether we have been working in the UK or more far fetched countries we have seen the following common themes:

Mobile Operators transitioning in to broader ICT services

For a few years mobile operators  focussed their strategy around fixed mobile substitution, however now its is very rare to find a pure play mobile operator. Mobile operators are looking to drive converged fixed & mobile and broader ICT strategies,  normally with a focus on Hosted services.

SIP Trunking attacks incumbents revenue

Every where we go from Africa/Middle East to mainland Europe we see a focus on SIP trunking. Depending on the regulatrory and competitive position the implementation and focus changes. For instance in South Africa fixed poring has only just  started to be implemented so the focus had been on outbound termination only.

Role of SBCs in Enterprise and SIP Trunking changing 

As I talk to SBC manufacturers and Service providers I hear that large enterprises are often demanding to use SBCs within their enterprise network to provide increase security and interopobility of their networks.

VPN grows in importance as Quality essential on converged networks 

As applications converge over IP and many of these become Cloud (hosted) the requirements for QOS over the wan becomes ever more important. This year we have worked with a large number of service provider looking at establising new services in these areas.

Mobile Data growth leads mobile operators to rethink content strategy 

This year we did projects in Asia, which demonstrated the phenomenal growth that mobile data and mobile video can drive on the mobile operators network.  We saw growth rates of over 800% in Data usage on already developed networks. This growth will drive the requirement for Mobile operators to better understand user behaviour and also explore Content Delivery Network technology and relationships with content owners.

Hosted VOIP/Cloud Services

The market for  hosted VoIP and UC services still continues to grow strongly, however we have found a number of providers still under estimate the operational capabilities and requirements needed to launch what are often complex services.

2012 – The Year Ahead

2012 will be an important year for illume,  in the next week or so we will announce a merger with one of our partner companies which will give us a lot more global and local capability. Alongside this we will announce a broader research portfolio which will cover a number of the themes above.

Generally although the market conditions are still likely to be tough for us all, there are certainly areas of growth which we all can exploit in the coming year. Speed of innovation and ability to execute however will be key.

I would like to thank everybody who has worked with us, purchased reasearch or just shared their thoughts with us this year.  I wish everybody a Happy, healthy and prosperous  New Year.


Matt Townend

MD illume Consulting