In the first of what it hopes will become an annual tradition, Aberdeen surveyed more than 4,500 companies and asked them to name the top-three technology companies that most influenced their business performance over the past year.
Andrew Boyd, chief research officer for Aberdeen, said most of the companies provided essential services common to many businesses, services he called "functional imperatives," such as voice services or Internet. Many technology companies, however, were able to help a customer's performance by finding a niche where they could provide a competitive difference.
Though the top of the list was dominated by enterprise mainstays like Microsoft, Oracle and SAP, less-standard enterprise competitors also made appearances.
Apple ranked #16, while budget VoIP providers Skype (#55) and Vonage (#68) also made the list.
Boyd said the qualitative data was still being analyzed, but mobility remained a high priority for many businesses, edged out only by Software as a Service.
Some of the telecom providers that made the Aberdeen Group rankings are as follows:
23. Verizon Wireless
Some of the telecom equipment vendors ranked: