Hi-Tech analyst house Juniper Research forecasts that there will be over 1 billion users of over the top (OTT) mobile VoIP services by 2017, reflecting a dramatic shift in how voice traffic is carried over the next five years.
A ‘Second Wind’ for Mobile VoIP
Juniper’s new report found that improvements in network technology, increased competition and the move by telcos to join the OTT space will all come together to give the mobile “internet-voice” market a ‘second wind’. However, as with Skype on the desktop, only a very small proportion will pay for the service, finds the report.
“Many subscriber sign up to an OTT service without ever planning to pay a cent for it, and some industry players do not have a short-term revenue model at all,” notes the report author, Anthony Cox.
The report notes, however, that leading mobile VoIP players are becoming increasingly sophisticated in their service offerings and are developing more ways to monetise their services.
Further key findings from the Report, Mobile & Tablet Voice & Video Calling: Strategic Opportunities & Business Models 2012-2017, include:
Specialist mobile VoIP companies are opening their Application Programming Interfaces to third parties including MNOs to gain revenues.
The arrival of 4G will give further impetus to mobile VoIP take-up but potentially accelerate the decline in overall voice revenues.
Despite market challenges, mobile video calling market leaders are finally beginning to monetise the mobile video calling sector through advertising and premium services.
Circuit switched voice revenues will still continue to decline, but at the end of the forecast period will represent a substantial proportion of MNOs’ revenues.