BOSTON, Jan. 5 /PRNewswire/ -- Each of the Yankee Group's research groups
has taken stock of its predictions for 2000, assessed its accuracy, and
forecasted their trends for 2001. The Yankee Group's leading industry experts
address the areas crucial to e-business success for 2001, predicting the
market trends for the communications, networking, wireless and Internet,
energy, and media and entertainment markets. Several key predictions in our
many market focus sectors include:
Customer care and billing market space will abound with merger and
acquisition activity. With the stock valuations of many public companies
(i.e. Portal, Daleen, etc.) having suffered, and other companies emerging as
stronger worldwide players (i.e. Geneva), these companies could be now
considered prime targets for acquisition. In addition, larger companies like
Nortel Networks, and Cisco Systems may be looking to acquire some of the
players in the billing space to complete or add to their end-to-end solution
offerings, making them a one-stop shop for both hardware and software.
Deployments of wireless Internet solutions will finally take hold, and
rapidly growing service firms will make major commitments in this area.
Because wireless technological innovation is mostly located in Europe, expect
to see many more acquisitions of European wireless service firms by North
American companies that are trying to quickly develop wireless capabilities
for the coming wireless wave. Because selling a wireless solution is
difficult, service vendors will have to provide extensive consulting so that
users can understand the opportunities in wireless. As a result, we expect
strong growth in consulting.
Emergence of carrier-scale storage solutions is imminent, and they will
become available over the next 12 months. These solutions will be highly
scalable, easy to manage products that meet or exceed current performance
measures, and will be adopted first by storage service providers.
Ethernet won the technology makeover of the year award in 2000 and will
live up to the hype in 2001 with the first 10 gigabit interfaces shipping. By
the end of the year, all of the major carrier focused Ethernet switch and
router vendors will announce that they will adopt the IEEE 802.17 standard for
Resilient Packet Rings.
Merger and acquisition game of long distance carriers in 2001 will see a
rise with major internal changes taking place in many of the IXCs, as well as
the recent volatility of their stock prices. A portion of one of these major
players will end up being the target of a takeover. Whether a major
international carrier or a next-generation IXC makes the move, no one should
be surprised to see a significant change in the make-up of the major
telecommunications service provider market. And even if the IXCs are not the
target of a merger or acquisition, they themselves are very likely to make a
serious play for some of the struggling CLECs and the new technology and local
footprint they offer.
Online content syndication provider market extends to corporate
enterprises. As the consumer portals scramble for profits, players in the
content syndication and aggregation arena emerge to help make doing business
in the content market cost effective and (eventually) profitable. As business
intelligence quickly becomes an online content management issue for
enterprises, consumer focused online content syndication solutions providers
such as iSyndicate and ScreamingMedia will expand their capabilities to
include developing content management solutions for corporations.
Outside of the top mass-market online retailers, a number of Internet-only
retailers are quietly and effectively building successful small businesses on
the Internet in markets that include specialty home goods, high-margin
fragrances, and niche market apparel. Because these small Internet-only
online retailers are privately held, they are insulated from the growth
expectations of investors in the public market.
Satellite broadband services such as Direct PC, StarBand, and WildBlue
will have approximately 1 million subscribers in the United States, by
year-end 2001. Rural America offers a vast -- and largely untapped -- market
for high-speed access to the Internet. According to the U.S. Census Bureau,
approximately 30% of U.S. homes are in rural counties. Yet telcos and cable
operators continue to concentrate on first- and second-tier markets.
Deploying cable modems and DSL to a few widely dispersed homes is technically
and financially impractical, especially for the smaller operators and local
exchange carriers (LECs) that serve rural markets. Satellite operators,
however, already cover over 90% of homes in the United States. Thus, they are
best situated from a technology, as well as a business, standpoint to bring
broadband access to the rural markets.
Scale and scope of wireless usage will continue to expand, and wireless
data will be driven primarily by adoption of messaging applications,
particularly for enterprise customers. Although the Yankee Group expects
9.4 million wireless data users (including SMS) by the end of 2001, over
50% of them will use their data service almost exclusively for messaging
applications such as email, SMS or instant messaging.
Wholesale of metropolitan fiber networks into U.S. Tier 2 and 3 cities
will witness extensive construction in 2001. With their ability to fund
capital expenses, utilities are presented a ripe opportunity to ride the wave
of the metro carriers' carrier trend.
2.5G and 3G network deployments will be delayed based on the bottlenecks
at getting enough commercial wireless terminals to support market deployments,
and operators will experience significant problems working out the kinks.
Internet users will continue to grow unabated in Asia-Pacific markets,
although rates of growth will vary from country to country. In the larger
countries like India and China, where there is a staggeringly large
addressable population, the number of Internet users will continue to grow at
a frenetic pace.
Mobile Subscriber Growth after a decade of exponential expansion of mobile
services, the Asia-Pacific market will show signs of a slowdown in 2001.
Total cellular subscribers in the region will increase by 5% to 275 million by
the end of 2001, compared to an estimated 50% growth rate in 2000. Reaching a
penetration level of 70%, there will be little if any upward potential for
Hong Kong and Taiwan.
VoIP: Building value proposition as telecom operators in Asia-Pacific
head down the convergent path, the inclusion of VoIP will become a key
differentiator for operators to ensure long-term sustainability by creating
added value. VoIP veterans are expected to play an enormous part due to their
sense of market needs. Among the major applications, we expect that IP fax,
Web-based call centers, and unified messaging will take the early lead and
find mainstream popularity in the business world.
About the Yankee Group
The Yankee Group is an internationally recognized leader in technology
research and strategic consulting, whose broad-reaching analysis encompasses
all areas essential to e-business success: the Internet, electronic commerce,
communications, wireless/mobile, computing, and enterprise applications. The
Yankee Group specializes in assisting companies with their e-business,
enterprise networking, and Internet technology and electronic market
initiatives while maintaining synergy with their overall business strategies.
Headquartered in Boston, the company's research and sales staff is located
throughout North America, Europe, Latin America, and Asia-Pacific. With over
30 different planning services, complete consulting capabilities, and a full
calendar of technology-focused conferences and seminars held around the globe,
the Yankee Group is truly a "one-stop shop" for strategic analysis and advice
on the information technology industry as a whole. The Yankee Group continues
to distinguish itself by providing comprehensive research, electronic content
delivery, and the industry's only personalized one-to-one approach for client
inquiry. For additional information regarding the Yankee Group and the
services it offers, please visit the company's Web site at
SOURCE Yankee Group