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IT Tech Barometer points to bigger budgets

Patchy. Very Patchy

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A survey of IT managers in Europe and US points to signs of "real growth" in budgets in 2003.

In the US corporate IT spending is forecast to increase by 5.9% over 2002, while an increase of 6.8% is predicted in Europe. But spending will be patchy, concentrated on a few, key technologies, according to the RoperNOP Technology Confidence Barometer. But at least growth will be sustainable, unlike in the days of irrational exuberance of the IT sector in the late 90s through 2002, the survey notes.

In its December "wave", the Technology Confidence Barometer picks up on significant budget increases planned for technology which uses the "infrastructure of the Internet for organisations to communicate efficiently and securely".

US IT decision makers are more gloomy than most of their European counterparts about short-term prospects in 2003. The outstanding exception is Germany, where the "weak economy appears to be holding back technology investment". Long-term, US decision makers remain confident about the overall longer-term growth prospects for IT investment, but right now they are less confident about their IT budgets now than when they were last polled in July, 2002.

So what are the hot budget areas?

  • Web-based applications and VPNs

  • Data and comms security - AV software, firewalls, access control systems and encryption technologies.
  • Data storage and high speed data transmission
  • Mobility: handheld devices, laptops and notebooks, wireless LANs

So that's kinda good news for many vendors. The bad news is that big capital expenditure is off the agendas of most companies. Consolidation of suppliers and ever-increasing pressure to measure return on investment are also noted. Also it remains very much an IT buyer's market, as this instructive Infoworld

feature

reveals. ®

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