An audio conferencing is an environment where multiple people are allowed to engage in the same call, regardless of the location. It is a powerful tool and replicates the scenario of a meeting room where everyone can hear what is been said and new people can be added to the ongoing discussion. Conference can be divided into three types i.e. audio, web and video conferencing, out of which audio conferencing is the most commonly used. While establishing an audio conferencing, each participants require the knowledge of conferencing phone number, meeting number and the time in order to join the audio conference. The meeting owner or host has certain additional call control features like muting participants. Furthermore features like security which delivers highly confidential audio services by providing additional level of security and management and diagnostic tool give the user a list of participants on the call and other trouble shooting services.
Some of the drawbacks of audio conferencing are limitations to the number of participants and lack of visuals. Overlooking these issues, audio conferencing has a lot to offer when compared with other means of conferences. Some of its benefits such as lower cost, security, mobility, accessibility with overseas participant, reliability and simplicity, which are responsible for an increased uptake of audio conferencing. Audio conferencing market is evolving rapidly as customers are shifting from traditional audio conferencing providers to integrated audio and web conferencing solutions.
Audio conferencing can be segmented based on technology types and countries. The technology types segment can be further sub-segmented based on phone enabled conferencing and web based voice over internet protocol or VoIP technology. Audio conferencing segment can be sub segmented based on countries which include Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.
Some of the factors that are influencing the growth of audio conferencing market in ASEAN areas include the need for lower cost bridging, when compared to video conferencing, ease of setup and feature rich automated conferencing service.
With the increased adoption of audio conferencing cloud computing and enterprise mobility have emerged as major trends in this market. Cloud based platforms are being increasingly implemented to host audio conferencing services and with mobility, users can now install a wireless application on their devices which promote “bring your own devices” (BYOD) to involve themselves in the audio conference
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Some of the key players in this market are AT&T Inc., PGi, Microsoft Corporation, Cisco Systems, IBM, Mitel Networks, Adobe systems, Avaya Inc., Siemens Enterprise Communications and British Telecom Group plc.
Major participants in ASEAN audio conferencing market follow the strategy of expanding existing product and services portfolio in order to retain existing customers by offering enhanced services and to attract new customers. For example. In 2014, Mitel offered new advanced conferencing and collaborative services on its MiVoice 5000 and MiVoice MX-ONE unified communications platform for medium and large businesses. Another way to gain a sustainable advantage against competition vendors in this market are focusing on partnerships and collaborations. For example. In 2014, AT&T and Cisco collaborated to enhance their cloud based solution that integrate audio, video and content sharing using almost any connected devices including smartphones, tablets, and desktop computers.