More businesses have been adopting unified communications solutions than ever before, and the "Unified Communications and Collaboration Market 2012-2016" report from Research and Markets shed new light on the growing popularity of these solutions.

Google LogoThe report found that in 2011, the worldwide premise-based UC market was worth $12.23 billion, which was up 8 percent over 2010. Research and Markets predicted that this will reach $20.76 billion by 2016. The part of UC that experienced the most growth is conferencing and collaboration, with a compounded annual growth rate of 17 percent. The report also looked at the Net or True UC market, finding revenues in 2011 up by 20 percent over 2010 levels to reach $2.7 billion. This is expected to reach $8.47 billion by 2016. Furthermore, the conferencing/collaboration component was noted to have the fastest growth rate, with a 50 percent CAGR.

Transparency Market Research also recently released its "Unified Communications Market - Global Forecast, Market Share, Size, Growth and Industry Analysis (2010 - 2017)" report, which expected the global UC market to exceed $16 billion by 2015. The report found that the PBX and video endpoints/infrastructure segments will make up more than 75 percent of the global market in three years.

Factors driving surge UC adoption
There are many factors responsible for the increased adoption rate of intelligent communications solutions. Research and Markets indicated that the IT consumerization trend is partially propelling the unified communication market as well as a proliferation of UC tools such as email, voice, text, video, presence, instant messaging, click-to-communication, mobility and unified client. 

"The need for UCC has never been greater, as the growth of the mobile workforce has led to the need for workers to communicate regardless of their location or device, and the rise of video communication and tools such as social software have created new ways for people to interact," the Research and Markets report stated. "With an integrated UC or collaborative communications solution, users can access the tools they need from whatever application they're in, without having to switch out from one to another. When tied in with a company's business processes, the result is optimized business processes."

The source detailed other tools responsible for the rise in popularity, including collaboration technologies like shared workplaces, meetings and conferencing, plus social tools like communities, user profiles, microblogging, and activity feeds.