The Future of VoIP Traffic on the International Level - Forecasts for 2019

20/feb/2019 15:07:52 pressnews Contatta l'autore

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The recent researches in the Telecommunication industry and global Telecom conferences rise the important questions of the future development of the international VoIP and SMS traffic, which was largely developing in the end on the 20-th century and is on its decay last years.

Below is the major characteristic of the current level of development and vectors of the development in these business spheres.


According to experts, this year the number of IP-telephony users in the world will exceed 150 million. Currently, the global market of VoIP-services is estimated at more than $ 70 billion.

Transparency Market Research (TMR), an American market research company, predicts a great future for the global VoIP market. According to her latest report, by 2020 the global VoIP market will grow to $136.76 billion, and the number of users will reach almost 350 million.

The list of 10 countries where VoIP services are most common includes the USA, Japan, France, South Korea, Germany, China, Brazil, the Netherlands, Canada, and the United Kingdom. When it comes to market growth rates, the list changes almost completely: the fastest growing market is in Lithuania, Puerto Rico, Poland, Ireland, Brazil, Romania, Slovenia, Estonia, Spain, and the UK.

It is interesting that although Europe is now the leader in terms of profit and the number of VoIP users, by 2020 more than 40% of these indicators worldwide will fall in the Pacific region. As in the previous years, Russia is in the TOP 5 Regional VoIP markets by the number of service users (nearly 28 million), ranking third after India (nearly 32 million) and the United States (30 million).

The factors that stimulate the development of the global market usually include the deployment of high-speed 3G and 4G networks, the development of network infrastructure, pricing policy, as well as the ease of implementation and configuration of VoIP.

At the same time, it is important to understand that 90% of the VoIP market is still in developed countries, and in the rest of the world, there are many factors that prevent the spread of VoIP. Among them, there are several serious obstacles to the development of IP-telephony. First, in many countries, the telecommunications infrastructure is not yet able to support VoIP services. Secondly, not all incomes are as high as in developed countries, and the high level of poverty and the low penetration of personal computers mean that people often do not have access to VoIP services. Finally, in some States, there are legal restrictions on the use of VoIP technologies, which often aim to protect local operators from competition. An example of this approach is Brazil, where the largest operator Brazil Telecom tried to stop the spread of VoIP services in the country. However, sometimes the reason is simply domestic policy. For example, in China, which shares with Germany the fifth place in the top ten countries with the highest degree of distribution of VoIP-services, the state is a monopoly in the provision of VoIP-services.

However, it would be wrong to think that the absence of legislative restrictions cancels the struggle of operators with OTT services. Even in the US and Canada, despite the adoption of the so-called network neutrality rules prohibiting discrimination by communication providers of any services and applications, there are no mechanisms to force companies to comply with them. In addition, in South Korea, Telecom operators are allowed to use any means to combat VoIP-services – from full blocking to additional billing.

The Prospects of VoIP Technologies Development

The intensive development of the Internet together with the introduction of UMTS and LTE technologies contribute to the explosive growth of the data traffic, which yet does not lead to a similar increase in revenue of telecom operators. Therefore, the main source of business growth for the mobile radio operators is the transition to IP-technologies and the introduction of IMS for the development of voice services in mobile networks of a new generation.

Among the current trends in the development and legislative regulation of VoIP services, in many countries, the VoIP market has become mainstream. Besides, the current stage is described as the migration of voice traffic in the data network, however, OTT-services have not yet been able to shake the confident position of traditional communication services.

Experts notice that VoIP-technologies are more likely to solve the tasks of the countries’ import-export fields and implementation of trusted environments through the development of domestic services and software.

From the point of view of consumers, VoIP is an analog of telephone services. At the same time, VoIP-providers provide services on a commercial basis through the networks of Telecom operators, but the domestic legislation in the field of communication still does not apply to them.

Experts on the international level express confidence in the necessity for a unified approach to the regulation of operators and communication Internet services, based on the principles of network neutrality.

Among the most relevant issues and questions being risen all over the world by the telecom experts are network attack protection systems development and implementation, which can be used as a means of ensuring the stability of VoIP networks.

New Drivers for the Development of The VoIP Market

One of the key issues discussed by the participants of the global telecom events is the prospects of the OTT players in an environment where the voice goes to the LTE network and becomes free. LTE technology offers a number of advantages to OTT service and application developers as they become even less dependent on the old Telecom infrastructure. At the same time, the list of subscriber devices that support new standards and technologies, such as WebRTC, is significantly expanded.

The transition of mobile operators to LTE networks with VoLTE support will become a new driver for the development of the VoIP market, since VoLTE is only a convenient transport for voice traffic, while OTT services are much more than just "voice". In particular, they provide the service provider with a worldwide subscriber base, offer users a convenient communication interface, are independent of the way of Internet access and communication channels, and are easily integrated with business applications such as CRM, as well as OSS/BSS systems. According to the experts' forecasts, by 2020, voice transmission via VoLTE technology will take no more than 14% of the VoIP market, while most of it will belong to OTT services.

 Main Trends in Different Market Segments

In the B2C segment, VoIP services are mainly used to save on communication services. This market is characterized by a high degree of saturation (for example, Skype is used by more than 300 million people around the world, and the share of this company accounts for only 40% of the market), so it is not necessary to wait for a large growth of the user segment.

The B2B segment is developing more dynamically. A study conducted in 2012 by Future Market Insights estimated the number of corporate users at about 100 million, and the volume of this market was about $43.3 billion. Initially, corporate users were also driven by the desire to reduce communication costs, and then added to this the understanding that VoIP services can save on infrastructure.

Finally, the corporate segment has come to use applications with built-in communications, which today greatly stimulates the development of the entire VoIP market. We are talking primarily about cloud PBX, call-centers, CRM, document management, accounting, ERP and other applications that allow not only to reduce costs but also to optimize business processes and increase revenue. This direction is now developing most rapidly. For example, the growth rate of the virtual PBX market in Russia reaches 35-50% per year, and in the whole world is 20-25% annually.

The next phase of VoIP market development is the mobile segment. Experts say that very soon mobile devices will become the main means of using VoIP-technologies, and the growing popularity of UC and BYOD models will accelerate this process. According to Juniper Market Research forecast, by 2017 there will be more than 1 billion users of mobile VoIP services provided by OTT model. Other sources claim that by 2016 mobile VoIP applications will bring a profit of $ 36 billion [3].

An important driver for the development of the mobile segment of IP-telephony is also the active development of the LTE ecosystem. So far, such networks across the country have built only small States like South Korea, Hong Kong, and Singapore, but in the near future, their example will be followed by the United States and Japan.

According to analysts, now the majority of users call via VoIP from computer to phone. At the same time, in the next five years, the profit from VoIP calls from phone to phone will grow by almost 15% annually, but a serious increase in the number of calls from computer to computer is not worth waiting for.

Prepared by Julia Rybalkina from:

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