With employees working remotely and organizations looking for ways to remain viable and stay in business, the cloud and unified communications-as-a-service (UCaaS) are in demand more than ever.
Moving to the cloud was already a smart move before the COVID-19 pandemic, but 2020 will mark one of the largest migrations ever, says Diane Myers, senior research director of VoIP, UC and IMS at Omdia.
“We see this accelerating in 2020 as many companies around world are facing increased workforce that is now remote because of COVID-19,” Myers said during an Enterprise Connect Virtual session. “Having that flexibility in all different pieces that come with a UCaaS solution is really hitting the sweet spot for a lot of companies.”
During the session, “UCaaS Report: Leading the Way Forward,” Myers went through a list of the 10 largest UCaaS providers in North America, and some on the list – as well as some omissions – may surprise you.
Ranked in order by seats installed base, financial stability, market momentum, service development and support options, here are those top 10 providers:
Myers opines on most of those providers, their benefits, growth and where they fit in the UCaaS market.
Cisco, Microsoft and Zoom in the UCaaS Market
However, there are some big names missing from that list, like Cisco, Microsoft and Zoom.
Cisco, Myers said, appears in the UCaaS ecosystem through partnerships with providers like Comcast, Nextiva and Vonage. It’s own install base on the Webex platform does not put it in the top 10.
Microsoft, however, is positioned to break into that top 10 once all is said and done at the end of the year, Myers said.
Calling is a core component of any UCaaS platform, and Microsoft is growing its base of Teams Calling users in addition to the rest of Teams and Office 365’s UCaaS apps.
“We anticipate that when we exit 2020, Microsoft will be in the top 10,” Myers said. “Starting in 2019 and absolutely accelerating in 2020, (businesses) are flipping off their calling and PBX and are moving to Microsoft for calling.”
Zoom, with video alone, doesn’t quite qualify as a UCaaS provider. However, the company in 2019 launched Zoom Phone and built that product up in 2019.
“They exited 2019 with an impressive number of seats on Zoom Phone for someone with less than a year in the market,” Myers said.