Emerging technology isn’t simply driving the growth that is to be found in IT spending. It is creating entirely new categories of investment, according to a Gartner Inc. forecast released Thursday. “Digital business is having a profound effect on the way business is done and how it is supported,” John-David Lovelock, the firm’s vice president of research, said in a research note. Next-generation tools fueled by business and tech platforms, such as the Internet-of-Things in manufacturing or blockchain in financial services, are driving “new categories of IT spending,” he said. CIO Journal’s Angus Loten delves into the forecast. Here are the highlights, which reflect an IT market that is morphing. Yesterday’s hype is today’s hope. Dreams become budget.
Growth in IT spending is accelerating. Global spending on IT is expected to reach $3.5 trillion this year, up 2.4% from 2016, fueled in part by the rise of new cloud-enabled digital platforms such as IoT and smart machines, according to Gartner. The gains will extend into 2018, growing 3.5% to $3.6 trillion by the end of the year, the firm said. Its latest forecast is based on an analysis of sales by thousands of technology vendors worldwide, across a range of IT products and services.
Enterprise software is eating the IT investment budget. The analysis shows the market for enterprise software, which enables companies to leverage an array of emerging digital-business capabilities, is poised to grow 7.6% over last year, to $351 billion, the fastest growing segment of total IT spending. Spending on enterprise software, including cloud-based software-as-a-service apps, will accelerate in the year ahead, hitting $381 billion in 2018, a 8.6% increase from 2017, the firm said. Spending will also rise for computers, tablets, mobile phones and other devices, as well as IT services, communications services and data center systems, though at a slower pace than software.