Why Phone Vendors Should Plan for Sizeable Cellular/VoWLAN Displacement

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Expect emerging cellular/VoWLAN phones to displace a wide array of other handsets, according to InfoTech’s new study on enterprise planning around converged voice devices.

Expect emerging cellular/VoWLAN phones to displace a wide array of other handsets, according to InfoTech’s new study on enterprise planning around converged voice devices.

In Dual-Mode Cellular/VoWLAN Solutions: Enterprise Preferences and Plans, 71% of U.S. respondent companies and 95% of EMEA interviewees predict a dual-mode phone will displace at least one other type of handset. Besides the basic cellphone, employees’ traditional desk sets will suffer the strongest cannibalization effect.

But the story doesn’t end there. IP desk phone, WLAN-only phone and smartphone purchases will all take a hit. IP desk sets are expected to be more negatively impacted in the United States, while smartphone deployments will suffer in a higher proportion of EMEA companies. The cellular/VoWLAN device also is expected to cannibalize a segment of softphone software purchases in both regions.

“Manufacturers and channels must start planning now for a negative impact on other voice handset sales when the converged devices begin seriously entering the marketplace,” comments Jeanine Sterling, vice president and senior program director of InfoTech’s “InfoTrack for Enterprise Mobility” research and intelligence program. “The initial displacement predictions we’ve received from our interviewees are conservative, as we asked them to define one – not all – of the expected cannibalized devices.”

“The most difficult area to predict seems to be the impact on WLAN-only phones. On one hand, our enterprise respondents are projecting a ‘lift all boats’ effect, with the publicity around dual-mode solutions opening up additional opportunities for its single-mode counterpart,” she adds. “But on a micro level, a certain percentage of companies are going to ‘trade up’ to or just wait for the converged device. Manufacturers’ pricing strategy is going to be a huge deciding factor here.”

On a related note, 29% of InfoTech’s U.S. respondents foresee no displacement effect from a dual-mode phone. “This indicates that a sizeable number of businesses anticipate adding new wireless users once a cellular/VoWLAN phone becomes available,” Sterling concludes. “Enterprises must make sure their WLAN capacity-planning efforts reflect this anticipated growth.”

For more information on the IEM program and the Dual-Mode Cellular/VoWLAN Solutions report, please visit http://www.telecomweb.com/marketresearch/enterprisemobility/ or contact Craig Born, 973/602-0123.

About InfoTech

InfoTech, part of The Telecom Intelligence Group, publishes a series of 10 reports per year on enterprise mobile communications as part of its InfoTrack for Enterprise Mobility program. Its just-released report, Dual-Mode Cellular/VoWLAN Solutions: Enterprise Preferences and Plans, examines current enterprise thinking around emerging cellular/VoWLAN communications solutions. It also analyzes resulting impacts on the single-mode WLAN-only phone as its dual-mode counterpart enters the market.

About The Telecom Intelligence Group

The Telecom Intelligence Group includes market-intelligence provider InfoTech; TelecomWeb and TelecomWeb news break; newsletters Wireless Business Forecast, Broadband Business Forecast, Telecom Policy Report and Inside Digital TV; tariff consultancy Tarifica; and the Web-based business telephony product database TelecomTactics. For more information on The Telecom Intelligence Group products and services, please visit http://www.TelecomWeb.com.

Contact:

Sharon Valencik, research director, 1-800-610-3109

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Sharon Valencik