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  3. > Things to Consider before Offering Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) in Latin America

What Carriers Need to Know

Key Findings

• In 2013, the cloud unified communications (UC) market in Latin America reached important milestones, with vendors and service providers (SPs) achieving big client wins.
• The cloud UC market represents a fraction of the on-premises UC market—vendors claim to have an installed base in the region ranging from a few thousand to a couple hundred thousand active users.
• Hybrid-cloud architectures are the most common deployment models, with large enterprises as the primary adopters, leveraging the cloud to extend UC applications to branch and remote offices.
• Penetration is low, and there is a big opportunity for growth as the addressable market includes both large enterprises and a growing small and medium businesses (SMBs) segment.
• Some SPs have claimed to have a few enterprise clients ranging from xxto xx end users. However, less than xx is rare, and there is still much work to be done to penetrate
this segment.
• SPs need to consider certain criteria when choosing a UC vendor for UCaaS: technology, services, cloud architectures, certification programs, market intelligence, and brand recognition.
• No undisputed best vendor exists; however, the best-fitting option will depend on each scenario. Thus, it is important to evaluate vendors based on the aforementioned
characteristics.
• Some SPs go to market with a single UC vendor; however, if possible, it is advisable to offer various options as doing so will broaden the addressable market.
• Enterprises with existing investments in a particular vendor are more inclined to choose that vendor for cloud UC services, as the integration is easier and less costly.
• Frost & Sullivan has identified that the cloud UC market has officially started in Latin America'after several years of hype'and the moment has arrived for SPs to position their offering.

Introduction

• When considering a UC vendor to offer UCaaS, it is important to evaluate the options based on several criteria, including:
o Technology
o Services
o Cloud architectures
o Certification programs
o Market intelligence
o Brand recognition
• Frost & Sullivan considers that there is no “best” UC vendor for all scenarios. Rather, there is a most “correct” vendor in each SP case.
• Some SPs may choose several UC vendors, as each vendor will be the “correct” choice for pursuing a particular segment.
• The following slides provide greater detail into the above elements and should serve as a stepping stone for a more exhaustive evaluation.

Technology

• It is widely recognized that technology is no longer the primary differentiating factor among vendors that offer the complete stack of UC solutions.
• The exception can be found in pure-play vendors that specialize in one particular solution (voice, video, or data). In these cases, technology plays a more prominent role in the final purchase decision.
• Today, full-stack UC vendors differentiate themselves through value-added services (consulting, integration, maintenance, and managed, among others) that wrap around the technology.
• While the aforementioned situation is forcing vendors to evolve their offering, certain technological considerations must be taken into account when choosing a vendor to offer cloud UC:
o Interoperability with third-party solutions (platforms and endpoints)
o Security (embedded within the solution)
o Network requirements (primarily bandwidth)
o Degree of complexity of integrating the solution within infrastructure and business processes
o Compatibility with virtualized environments
o Open source (for application development)
o Federation (communication with stakeholders outside of one’s own organization)
o Future roadmap (to guarantee that today’s investments will not be obsolete in the short-term)
• The above factors will determine a resellers go-to-market strategy, target market, future partnerships, financial planning, and investments (infrastructure and training).

Table Of Contents

Things to Consider before Offering Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) in Latin America
Executive Summary
Definitions
Things to Consider
Budget Growth for Cloud in 2013 as Compared to 2012
Case Studies
The Last Word
Frost and Sullivan Story

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