It’s about that time when everyone scratches their heads and wonders how yet another year could go by so fast. 2013 has been an exciting and fast-moving year for the telecommunications industry. In fact, despite global economic uncertainty, telecommunications industry revenue is slated to reach $2.7 trillion by 2017 according to data from Insight Research.


Research indicates that there is plenty to look forward to in 2014. Here’s a quick roundup of what some of the industry’s top industry pundits believe telecommunications will offer next year:


Enterprise Mobility


  • High Application Usage: In Frost & Sullivan’s recent list of the top seven information and communications technology (ICT) game-changers, analysts predict that high application usage — driven by the growing volume of devices being used by employees — will compel organizations to take enterprise mobility more seriously. The firm also expects to see mobility security, cloud-based mobile device management (MDM), and cloud-based private enterprise application stores become more relevant in 2014.


  • Mobile VoIP Subscribers Will Rise: 2013 was a huge year for mobile VoIP. According to market research firm In-Stat, by the end of 2013 the total number of mobile VoIP users will have reached 288 million — with half associated with online mobile VoIP providers. Furthermore, TechNavio forecasts the global mobile VoIP solutions market to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 64.6 percent from 2011 to 2015. As more businesses work to meet their need for high wireless bandwidth, mobile VoIP revenue will only rise further in 2014.




  • WebRTC Growth Is Hitting Critical Mass: Also included in Frost & Sullivan’s list of ICT game-changers is WebRTC, or Web Real-time Communication. A white paper by Alcatel-Lucent projects that WebRTC will be enabled on 3.5 billion devices by the end of 2016. It is already available on major browsers such as Firefox and Google Chrome, with quick advancements being made on mobile devices.


  • WebRTC to Drive Competition: At the same time, Frost’s analysts reason that browser-to-browser communications could eventually lessen the need for some telephony devices and peripherals, while providing new opportunities for telecom vendors. The rapid maturity of WebRTC has prompted companies such as GENBAND and Oracle to integrate WebRTC into its suite of products and services, and could drive competition as more industry players work to stay ahead of this quickly advancing technology.


Unified Communications


  • UCaaS Will Become the Norm in 2014: Frost & Sullivan predicts that Unified Communications-as-a-Service (UCaaS) — or UC hosted by a third party vendor — becoming an industry standard in 2014. As such, the firm sees a bleak year for vendors that do not develop hosted or cloud-based offerings as they will find it increasingly difficult to compete in the market in the New Year.


  • Global UC Growth Predicted: A recent study conducted by MarketsandMarkets shows that UCaaS will be one of the key enabling factors that will drive the entire unified communications market. Furthermore, the study reveals that the global UCaaS market is expected to grow from $2.52 billion in 2013 to $7.62 billion by 2018


What telecom trends do you expect in 2014? Please share in the comments section below.