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You WON'T spend as much on IT in 2014 as we thought - Gartner

Growing competition, lack of differentiation lead to dip

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Global spending on IT is not growing as much as anticipated, according to Gartner.

Price pressure thanks to increased competition, a growing lack of product differentiation, and the availability of viable alternatives are all dampening spend for 2014.

Worldwide IT spending this year will therefore grow by just 2.1 per cent from $3.62 trillion to $3.7tn, rather than the 3.2 per cent (to $3.74 trillion) Gartner says that it had expected. That's a difference of about $40bn.

Enterprise software is expected to grow the fastest of any segment – up 6.9 per cent to $321bn.

It is demand for database management software as a portion of IT infrastructure spending that’ll drive growth, Gartner said, with spending on applications – specifically office suites and digital content creation software – going slow.

IT services will grow 3.8 per cent to $967bn.

Services are being hit by a slow pace of IT outsourcing and the fact public cloud providers are eating into the business of traditional data-centre outsourcers.

Devices – spanning PCs, mobile phones and tablets – will grow relatively slowly, up 1.2 per cent to $685bn.

Gartner blamed lower price points on phones and tablets, as tablets are now in half of US homes and with the next wave of adopters likely to be attracted by low price.

Growth in telecoms services will be slow, jut 0.7 per cent, but it’ll be the biggest overall beneficiary of IT spend – it’s expected to hit $1.6tn for the year.

Data centre systems will grow slowest of any group – 0.4 per cent to $140bn, according to Gartner.

According to Gartner, this is down to restricted IT budgets and the fact – on servers – customers continue to move away from high-cost to low-cost systems.

Gartner reckoned on a return to “normal” IT spending between 2015 and 2018. It expects the total for worldwide IT spending to grow 3.7 per cent, hitting $3.8tn. ®

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