Optus says IP networks spared budget cuts

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Optus says IP networks spared budget cuts

Customers still buying bandwidth.

A survey commissioned by Optus has revealed continued investment in IP networks, even as budget cuts stalls spending on IT&C across three in four organisations.

The Optus IP Index - a survey of 232 corporate and government customers - revealed that 57 percent of organisations have a static budget to spend on networks in 2009, with 18 percent expecting less money to spend.

At the same time, between 37 and 41 percent of respondents expected their organisations to have greater bandwidth requirements. The variation was between head office and branch office respondents respectively.

"People are still seeing a requirement for growth," Scott Mason, marketing director of Optus Business.

Mason said organisations were still managing to improve their networks.

"Either they are coming off contract and putting pressure on suppliers," he said, "or they are taking budget from other areas to spend on bandwidth."

Mason said that in his twenty years in the telco industry "price erosion has always been an issue." But it was particularly prevalent in the current market.

"Thankfully, what we haven't seen people do is stop spending," he said. "We haven't seen many organisations cancel or crawl back spending on telecommunications. Instead, they are becoming much more savvy about utilising what they've got more efficiently."

Organisations are investing in "technologies that give more bang for buck," he said, such as IP Trunking, network quality of service tools and WAN optimisation products.

The survey also revealed that one in five organisations are using software rented online under the SaaS (software as a service) model.

Optus told iTnews the 232 survey respondents were a mix of Optus customers and organisations chosen by a market research company - all qualified by having invested in IP-based Wide Area Network (WAN) technology.

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