Revenue growth from sales of unified communications (UC) products and systems across Europe has continued upwards in the first few months of 2021, despite a strong 2020 dominated by mass remote working, according to Context.
Context figures for sales through IT distribution revealed 60% growth this year-to-date (YTD) versus the same period last year.
Although sales declined slightly from the Q1 2021 average to April, last month’s revenue figures were up an impressive 70% on April 2020 and 72% on April 2019. This was driven by strong performance in all segments, with UC cameras (+337%) and UC microphones (105%) leading the way.
As for the region’s top five biggest markets, Germany (90%), France (124%) and Spain (66%) posted YTD growth above the European average, with Italy (58%) and the UK (26%) coming in lower.
“Overall, the unified communications market has been booming since the start of the pandemic thanks to demand from home workers and students, and these trends are continuing today as users still rely on UC to enhance productivity. Another contributing factor is adoption of new video communications technology, which many organisations are still in the process of rolling-out company wide,” says Sam Naman, research and business development manager at Context.
“However, going forward we’re likely to see year-on-year sales growth slowing due to the incredibly strong 2020 the UC category had, and the acceleration of back-to-work plans in some countries.”
To that end, UC segments traditionally associated with office use including collaboration display systems and collaboration room systems have recorded strong growth in April, while cameras, headsets, microphones and speakers have been trending downwards.
IP phones – once the second largest segments in the hardware part of the UC market with a share of around 20% in 2019 – saw sales slump during 2020 as offices closed across Europe.
However, it recorded 16% year-on-year revenue growth in April, in another sign that as employees go back to the office, the IT channel market across the region will continue to evolve.