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The State of the Premise-Based Phone System

July 27, 2017
As new cloud-based solutions continue to make waves in the telecommunications market, one thing is certain – the existing premise-based phone providers are struggling to keep up in a market where the customers are demanding cloud-based solutions. Shoretel’s premise-based phone systems, for example, haven’t been profitable for the last 14 years. And while they are still afloat others in the industry haven’t been so lucky. Case in point, Avaya and Toshiba, two of the larger on-premise phone system providers, have dominated the headlines this year with talks of bankruptcy and market exit.

Premise-Based Phone Providers Are Exiting the Market

Avaya, having filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy earlier this year, is in the midst of executing its reorganization plan which includes the sale of the company’s networking business to Extreme Networks. While many in the industry are hopeful that Avaya will make it through this reorg process, the reality is Avaya is on life support. No one really knows what the company will look like when the bankruptcy process is completed, leaving many customers and partners in a state of flux until Avaya gets this mess sorted out.

Toshiba, on the other hand, has made the decision to get out of the telecom game altogether, selling off all of its Telecommunications System Division and support contracts to Mitel. Although not a Chapter 11 scenario, Toshiba customers are still in the dark as to how they will be managed and supported by Mitel. Further, as Toshiba makes its exit, there is also the expectation that replacement hardware components will be hard to come by, rendering some pieces of hardware useless in the coming years.

What’s Next?

For customers caught in the Avaya/Toshiba storm and possibly others in the future, some careful planning needs to take place. Most businesses will still be able to use their system for a while, while others may uncover an urgent need to make the switch to something more “future-proof.” Either way, the state of the premise-based phone system providers should serve as a warning.

  • Do you have a plan in place for a cloud strategy?
  • Is your existing network ready for a change?
  • Is there additional work that needs to be done as your prepare for the next few years?

Don’t play the guessing game when it comes to your business communications. Let’s face it. You’re operating in a world of the unknown when it comes to Avaya and Toshiba systems. Don’t get stuck without a plan for the future. Don’t get stuck without support or replacement components for your system. Don’t get stuck behind the eight ball in the months or years to come without a strategy in place to move to the Cloud.

CTG can help. We’re like the AAA of telecom – you’ll never be stranded without a plan. Contact the Hosted Phone experts at Corporate Technologies Group today and make a plan for the future. Read our Hosted Phone Readiness Checklist for more information.