What is CPaaS?
CPaaS, Communications Platform as a Service, enables businesses to add real-time communication to their applications and business platforms. Early CPaaS focused on simple messaging and voice applications, and relied on developers to deploy APIs, limiting its use mostly to large digital natives and experts.
Nowadays CPaaS includes video, customer contact, IOT, security, payments, and many more communication technologies, and can be deployed through low-code/no-code platforms by non-developers such as product owners, marketing, operations or even small business owners.
CPaaS represents a significant disruption to the communications industry as we know it today. All industry analysts agree a massive double digit annual growth opportunity now exists, going from around $15B in 2022 to a forecasted amount of more than $60B by 2028. When we add new CPaaS providers and new solutions, the total addressable CPaaS market is well over $100B by the end of this decade.
Why should CSPs get involved?
Large and small CSPs (including large telcos, operators, carriers) are in a unique position to leverage the power of their networks (messaging, voice, security, IOT, etc) and help their enterprise customers with their digital transformation journeys. Covid-19 has accelerated the demand from businesses of all sizes for such new capabilities and solutions, and research shows a large majority of them look at their existing CSP for help.
Furthermore, CPaaS and APIs are widely seen as crucial in the telco journey to become a techco or platform telco, and to monetize 5G through new business models and new applications.
CSPs have been experimenting with various CPaaS platforms and G2M approaches for years, and some have successfully integrated that into their cloud communications strategy. As more and more CSPs see the opportunity (or necessity) or CPaaS, industry analysts widely expect dozens more CSPs to enter that market this year and build offerings matching their organisation, market and overall strategy.
The Secret of Success
CPaaS has clearly moved beyond the introductory stage to full-on acceleration mode bringing with it a number of critical issues that CSPs need to implement to capture and scale.
The kind of CPaaS to offer, the solutions to develop and the markets to go after are different for every CSP.
The internal organisation across business and technology, aligning short and longer term focus, are crucial to success.
Partnerships with the right CPaaS Enabler(s) and knowledge partners, as well as local developers need to be developed.
G2M & CSM
Finally, with everything in place the go-to-market and customer success management make all the difference.