As this TMCNet.com article on unified communications points out, unified communications is difficult to define as a market in and of itself. The components that make up unified communications cut across a variety of existing markets including “conferencing (Web, audio, video and multi-media); voice, fax and email messaging; instant messaging; mobility; presence; phone systems; communications-enabled business processes and hosted collaboration or voice services.”
But, when you combine the component markets that make up unified communications and look at the unified communications market as a whole, it appears that what was a $21.5 billion market in 2008 is on track for 12% annual growth and is predicted to grow to a $37.3 billion market by 2013. With a global economy in recession its nice to see an IT segment with strong growth. It is probably no coincidence that it is a market segment that has the most potential to result in more efficient and streamlined business processes and enable organizations to cut costs in a variety of ways.