Cloud Communications in 2024: A Selection Dilemma

microsoft teams
February 2, 2024
‘The Probables’ and ‘The Possibles’ shaping the year ahead

I was asked by our marketing folk to share some thoughts about the industry in 2024, and how Akixi is planning its future. Given we are close to the kick-off of the annual 6 nations tournament in Europe, I thought I would frame my perspective using a rugby theme. Traditionally, selection for international rugby teams playing in the six nations were taken from two pots; the possibles and the probables, with the latter being more likely to be included in the match day squad. I decided to approach it in the same way and consider the trends that are probable to happen this year and those that are merely possible.

The Probables

Contextual analytics

Businesses are increasingly time pressured and need to arrive at the “so what” of data analysis faster. To deliver context you need information about the interaction parties, which means access to the business management or CRM system. By combining communication analytics, media, transcriptions, alongside the context from the CRM system, you can assist customer facing staff to make better decisions, assist quicker, and generally improve the CX of the business. This is why Akixi invested in Mondago during late 2023, and will be a strategic part of our development efforts in 2024.



Microsoft Teams is becoming the dominant UC service out there for new build, but change does not happen overnight, and there are many use cases where it struggles. I expect we will see significant focus on hybrid use cases between PBX estate and Teams, and other UCaaS players. An analytics capability to straddle Teams and the 3rd party system will be a major use case in 2024, especially in mid to large enterprise accounts.


Service Provider-centric solutions

As the hyper cloud UC players increasingly dominate the market, service providers need to add value when reselling those services. The trouble is, many of the service extensions to Teams, Cisco Webex etc., have been built as a direct to market solution, which is ill suited to mass delivery by a service provider. Given the accelerating volumes of PSTN attach services from the service providers, there will be a drive of value-added services managed under a single customer portal with workflows that hide configuration complexity. Additionally, the value-added services themselves need consistent behaviour across hyper cloud comms platforms to reduce the unit cost of deployment.

The Possibles

True mobile UC integration

Every year I attend various industry events where luminaries proclaim “mobile is going to be big”, but it just has not happened. Let’s be clear, the technology is there and has been for some time, but I think there are structural issues at play where mobile operators see UC as more of a threat than an opportunity, especially when connected to the hyper players who already sell their own voice plans. This issue leads to defensive behaviour with services packaged and priced in a manner to target specific market segments, thereby throttling growth. Maybe Microsoft or Cisco will finally crack the commercials with the mobile players this year, but I think it will remain a slow burner.


Widespread deployment of AI based work practices

We have all seen the co-pilot demos and you cannot question the efficiencies it can bring to work practices.  However, I feel it is still very early in the business cycle to create widespread adoption, with issues such as commercial licensing restricting the functionality to the most expensive user packages. Along with its customers, Akixi is researching the most common use cases for applying AI-based models. Contextual analytics is the favourite candidate to date.