As the market for VoIP technology continues to boom, partners are finding that the commercial market may be outpacing the enterprise in its ability to provide ready-made sales opportunities.
“In the commercial space, folks are buying today; in the enterprise, most folks are just preparing to buy,” says Dave Woodward, vice president of sales for Calence, a networking solution provider in Tempe, Ariz. “If [enterprise customers] are doing a core network refresh, they want to put themselves in a position to build the network right for IP telephony down the road. If you’re planning to implement VoIP in 18-24 months, you’ll want to have the framework in place.”
This isn’t to say that there are fewer sales opportunities in the enterprise; just that they may be longer in coming to fruition. But the VoIP market still is taking off across the board. Last week, market researcher In-Stat released a report that said as VoIP functionality is integrated into Customer Premise Equipment (CPE), such as modems, routers and residential gateways, the overall market for VoIP integrated circuits (ICs) will grow from $208.7 million in 2004 to $1.3 billion in 2009, with wireless handsets becoming an eventual key market.
The report did find that VoIP IC revenue on the infrastructure side is growing more slowly than other segments because of price pressures from the service-provider level down through VoIP equipment and silicon providers.
Calence partners with Cisco on VoIP installations, but Woodward acknowledges that there is plenty of room for vendors to improve on their VoIP offerings.