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02/01/2010

Heavy Reading Report Redefines VoIP Disruption

There has been a lot of confusion about the disruptive potential of VoIP innovation. Although announcements about supposedly disruptive new VoIP-based technologies or services occur regularly, somehow the dominant telecom carriers manage to remain dominant. In fact, their toughest competitors are other types of dominant carriers. At present, the three most powerful classes of competitors in telecommunications are landline, mobile and cable telephony providers, and all three employ conventional commercial and technical models. Although cable providers use VoIP, in every other way they are themselves traditional telcos.

In reality, telecommunications in general and VoIP in particular are too complex to fit the standard definitions of disruptive innovation. Even major VoIP innovations don't necessarily result in the disruption of the telecom services market. To the contrary, a given innovation can help incumbent carriers as much as it hurts them. At the same time, factors that have nothing to do with technological innovation can have major impact on the market positions of incumbents. As a result, understanding the true disruptive potential of VoIP innovation requires a new definition of disruption that explains how some innovations disrupt while others don't.

I recently detailed such a definition and related concepts in a report I've been working on for analyst firm Heavy Reading for the past several month. The report, which is now available for purchase, describes the changes VoIP innovation brings to telephony models, practices and concepts. It also analyzes 17 categories of potentially disruptive VoIP services and the impact they are likely to have on the telecom services market as a whole. Finally, it profiles 50 potentially disruptive companies and services. Information about the report has been posted on the Heavy Reading Website.

Comments

On a converged network, disruption is the main problem facing many telecommunications providers. But with the introduction of the asynchronous frequencies, VoIP has become smoother.

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Resources

  •     A selection of free documents for download to help make purchasing decisions when shopping for a business phone system.
  •      Get customized price quotes on a business phone system from top vendors.

Reports

  • Choosing the (Near-) Perfect Cloud Video Conferencing Solution
         This 7-page buyer's guide gives SMBs the information they need to choose the cloud-based video conferencing service that fits their needs. As a for-purchase download priced at $9.99, this document avoids the conflicts of interest of papers and guides that are offered for free, or sponsored by, vendors and service providers. Instead, it provides the kind of objective and authoritative information that would otherwise require assigning a staffer to spend days or weeks searching out and evaluating.

  • SMB Video Conferencing: Getting Beyond Clouds & Interoperability
         This 31-page VoIP Evolution report provides an in-depth analysis of a market that has suddenly become very competitive. It identifies and dispels some of the misconceptions that have become part of the conventional wisdom surrounding SMB video conferencing. Chief among these are unrealistic expectations regarding the cloud approach and interoperability.
         The report provides an innovative approach to analysis by illustrating that these issues are just two of many important factors that differentiate solutions from one another. The report surveys 10 Companies to Watch and compares 16 cloud solutions using a unique Differentiation Matrix that clarifies their strengths and weaknesses.

  • Voice Over LTE: More Pitfalls Than Promise for Now
        This 18-page Heavy Reading Insider report, written by Robert Poe, analyzes the prospects for delivery of voice calls over cellular networks using LTE (long-term evolution) 4G wireless technology. Operators are originally looking to use LTE mainly for mobile data services, since a number of technical issues make delivering voice traffic over LTE complicated. The report describes the various options available to operators, and explains why they are likely to move to voice over LTE later rather than sooner. Information about the report is available at Heavy Reading 4G/LTE Insider.

  • Making HD Voice Happen: Choosing Codecs, Connecting Islands
        This Heavy Reading Insider report by Robert Poe evaluates the impact HD voice will have on voice services providers ranging from traditional telcos to cable MSOs to cellular carriers to VoIP operators. The 20-page report also analyzes the role vendors' and providers' choices of codecs will play in ensuring that HD voice services can be delivered end-to-end, rather than only within individual providers' or enterprises' networks. It also surveys the HD voice efforts of 14 vendors.
        Information about the report is available at Heavy Reading Insider. A column about the report is available at Light Reading.

  • Disruptive VoIP Services: What Carriers Need to Know
        A report by Robert Poe for Heavy Reading, analyzing the innovative VoIP services with the most potential to disrupt the telecom services market over the next three to five years.
        The 57-page report describes the changes VoIP innovation brings to telephony models, practices and concepts. It identifies 17 categories of potentially disruptive VoIP services, and analyzes their potential impact on the market. It also profiles 50 potentially disruptive companies and services.
        Information about the report is available on the Heavy Reading Website. Coverage of the report is available on the Light Reading Website.


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