17.03.14

Revenue hard to find despite steep rise in mobile video calls

Mobile video calling is growing rapidly but revenue opportunities are harder to find for the providers, according to a recent report from research and consultancy firm Juniper Research.

In its report, Future Voice Strategies: mVoIP, Carrier OTT and Mobile Video Calling 2014-2018, Juniper research says users of mobile video calling services such as Skype are forecast to increase to more than 130 million users by 2018.

However, it notes that only a small proportion of mobile video calling users pay for the service directly. To combat this providers are widening their service offerings.

Anthony Cox, author of the report, said: "The role of mobile video calling is becoming clearer. With a number of OTT players having gained a critical mass of users through the provision of free video services, those players are now introducing an array of premium products or creating revenue-share partnerships to create a viable revenue stream."

The report also found that new standards such as WebRTC (Real Time Communication) will improve integration of mVoIP functionality into web sites and mobile Apps, paving the way for the development of new services such as direct access to sales call centres from websites.

Further findings from the report include:
        •With the arrival of 4G, most MNOs will adopt VoLTE, increasing their network efficiency, though direct revenues will be limited.
        •Specialists such as Kineto and Amdocs have found a niche in creating OTT monetisation strategies for multinational operators.
        •MNOs and rival OTT carriers are collaborating on creating advanced "carrier OTT" voice services, potentially representing the most important change in the voice market since the advent of VoIP itself.