Voice calls will no longer make-up the primary revenue source for communications carriers within six years.

That's according to more than 80% of the industry executives questioned in a a global communications industry survey, conducted on Oracle's behalf by the Economist Intelligence Unit.
In addition, more than half of the senior executives questioned believe this will happen within the next four years, emphasising the need for operators to immediately identify and develop new revenue streams to avert steep declines in their business.
Survey results show that, worldwide, executives believe that new on-line Voice over IP (VoIP) services, such as Skype, are the greatest threat to the fixed line revenues with 68% of respondents identifying VoIP operators as the primary cause of declining revenues. Additional results include:
* 72% of executives believe that introducing new services is the most effective strategy to counter falling voice revenue, much more so than pricing changes or marketing initiatives.
* 65% of respondents comment on bundled triple-play offerings as important or critical, emphasising the importance of the overall service packaging within the communications industry.
* 51% of executives say mergers and acquisitions with mobile operators are strategies they are most likely to pursue in the next two years.
Executives in every region cited operational cost efficiency as the main obstacle in developing new revenue streams.  Respondents acknowledged that service providers must act now to upgrade their core networks, streamline their organisational structures and business processes and must provide greater functionality and more compelling user experiences, such as converged instant messaging, in-call-content sharing and push-to-talk over cellular.  Doing this is vital if they are to compete effectively with smaller, highly mobile start-ups leveraging disruptive IP-based technologies and platforms.
“The global communications industry is changing drastically and rapidly,” says Denis McCauley, director: Global Technology Research at the Economist Intelligence Unit. “Our survey results illustrate a sense of urgency for fixed-line and wireless service providers to deliver new services for their customers in order to remain competitive.”
Bhaskar Gorti, senior vice-president & GM of Oracle Communications Global Business Unit, adds: "The results from the global communications community clearly
demonstrate how important it is for both fixed-line and wireless operators to act immediately.
“With the rapid decline in voice revenues and the reality of an ever changing competitive set, customer service providers must accelerate their development of new revenue opportunities.”