DMSL says that figures in the recently published annual Communications Market Report from Ofcom send out positive signals for VoIP resellers and herald and the beginning of the end for fixed line communications.
It also points to the growth in data consumption as a clear sign that businesses and home users are starting to make more use of fast broadband connections to access services and content.
The Ofcom report showed that UK businesses made 17.9 billion minutes of outgoing VoIP calls in 2015, a 19.1 percent increase on 2014. Meanwhile, fixed voice service revenues fell by 2.4 percent in 2015, to £0.2bn and the total number of business fixed lines fell by 4.3 percent in 2015. At the end of last year, there were 7.6 million business fixed lines and ISDN channels. Average monthly retail revenue per business line fell by 2.7 percent in 2015.
DMSL believes these rates of growth and decline have gathered pace over the last few months. “Hosted VoIP sales are booming and we’d estimate that growth is now running at close to three percentage points, while there has been a corresponding decline in the use of fixed lines”, says John Carter Managing Director of DMSL. “We are seeing businesses embrace the technology and the beginning of the end for the fixed line and PBX hardware.”
But with well over seven million fixed business lines still in use, there is still huge potential for growth, Carter noted. “We are in a period of transition and the move from fixed line calls to VoIP is well underway. We expect to see a further acceleration over the rest of this year and into 2017.”
Revenues generated from VoIP usage were not fully captured by the Ofcom report, but Carter says they are only going in one direction. “Hosted VoIP revenues are on steep upward curve and delivering additional benefits to businesses. They have much more control and voice can be fully integrated with other digital and cloud-based services.”
The increased use of data will bring further opportunities, he predicts. The Ofcom report stated that increased uptake of superfast broadband saw the average amount of data consumed over broadband lines rise to 82GB, a 41percent increase from the 58GB per month recorded in June 2014. “As more businesses and homes get access to ultrafast services, the use of voice and other services will gain added momentum,” says Carter. “Ultrafast is the key to the future. It brings new possibilities for businesses and more potential for resellers and dealers.”