I was chatting with another industry blogger recently. We were discussing how there are a lot of VoIP Providers out there. I estimate it at over a thousand. However, I don't see the Hosted PBX space making huge strides. Before VoiceCon, the numbers showed that premise based PBX units were the stagnant -- not decreasing.
My associate says, "Everyone has a similar platform and features; sales are predicated on relationships and lacking that price. Key system emulation is big for VSB" (very small business = less than 10 employees).
In Icarus Deception, Seth Godin describes the marketplace changes that we are living in with the decline of the Industrial Age. Godin says that we live in the Internet fueled Age of Abundance.
"We do have an abundance of choice, an abundance of connection, and an abundance of access to knowledge. We know more people, have access to more resources, and can leverage our skills more quickly and at a higher level than ever before. This abundance leads to two races. The race to the bottom is the Internet-fueled challenge to lower prices, find cheaper labor, and deliver more for less. The other race is the race to the top: the opportunity to be the one they can't live without, to be the linchpin we would miss if he didn't show up. The race to the top focuses on delivering more for more. It embraces the weird passions of those with the resources to make choices, and it rewards originality, remarkability, and art." [Seth Godin]
So why isn't UC selling?
People suck at selling it. Companies suck at marketing it. Companies stink at deploying it.
I know that is harsh, but how many businesses ask for UC? Um, none. They want a cheap phone system and their smartphones.
If Apple made a UC platform, everyone would buy it. Why? It would be user friendly. It would be a little different from all the rest. It would be branded and marketed well.
No one even does anything cool with the IP Phones! Those full color screens on those tiny computers that run XML and have numerous soft buttons that are useless.
The Broadcore Connect UC bundle includes voice, video, messaging, conferencing and mobility solutions with various connectivity options. How is that any different than XO's or any other Broadsoft BroadCloud BroadOne?
Everyone is offering a bundle - ANPI, VoIP Innovations, everyone! It's worse than the allergy aisle at the pharmacy!
"Successful organizations have realized that they are no longer in the business of coining slogans, running catchy ads, and optimizing their supply chains to cut costs." - Seth Godin