Forrester: IT Spending to Rebound in 2010

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Using a term touted by IBM, Forrester says IT is entering a growth cycle of smart computing. 

After a dismal performance in 2009, the technology sector will see a recovery in 2010 as businesses and governments in the U.S. and around the world begin spending again on information technology, according to a new report by Forrester Research, Inc. After declining 8.2 percent in 2009, U.S. IT spending will grow 6.6 percent in 2010 to $568 billion. Global IT spending, which dropped 8.9 percent last year, will rise 8.1 percent in 2010 to more than $1.6 trillion. Software and computer hardware will see the greatest growth, as Forrester forecasts a new multi-year cycle of technology investment growth and innovation defined by Smart Computing. The Forrester forecast provides vendor strategy professionals with recommendations regarding how to align their sales and marketing efforts to the current and future environment for IT spending.

“The technology downturn of 2008 and 2009 is unofficially over,” said Andrew Bartels, Forrester Research vice president and principal analyst. “All the pieces are in place for a 2010 tech spending rebound. In the US, the tech recovery will be much stronger than the overall economic recovery, with technology spending growing at more than twice the rate of gross domestic product (GDP) this year.”

With regard to sector growth, hardware and software will lead the charge. Measured in U.S. dollars, global purchases of computer equipment will be up 8.2 percent, communications equipment buying will rise by 7.6 percent, software spending will increase by 9.7 percent, purchases of IT consulting and systems integration services will grow by 6.8 percent, and IT outsourcing services will be 7.1 percent higher.

On a regional basis, Europe will be the strongest performing region. Measured in US dollars, the strongest growth in 2010 will be in Western and Central Europe, where tech purchases will rise by 11.2 percent, boosted by the dollar’s decline against the euro. IT purchases in Canada will grow by 9.9 percent, Asia Pacific by 7.8 percent, and Latin America by 7.7 percent. The weakest market will be Eastern Europe, the Middle East, and Africa, rising by just 2.4 percent. When measured against local currency, however, the US will actually post the strongest growth of all the regional tech markets.

“We are entering a new six-to-seven-year cycle of IT growth and innovation that Forrester calls Smart Computing,” said Bartels. “New technologies of awareness married to advanced business intelligence analytics make computing smart. Smart Computing rests on new foundation technologies such as service-oriented architecture, server and storage virtualization, cloud computing, and unified communications. 2010 marks the beginning of this next phase of technology advancement.”

Select Forrester clients can access the 38-page “U.S. and Global IT Market Outlook: Q4 2009” report, which includes a more detailed breakdown of IT spending by sector and region.

About Forrester Research

Forrester Research, Inc. (Nasdaq: FORR) is an independent research company that provides pragmatic and forward-thinking advice to global leaders in business and technology. Forrester works with professionals in 20 key roles at major companies providing proprietary research, consumer insight, consulting, events, and peer-to-peer executive programs. For more than 26 years, Forrester has been making IT, marketing, and technology industry leaders successful every day. For more information, visit www.forrester.com.

After a dismal performance in 2009, the technology sector will see a recovery in 2010 as businesses and governments in the U.S. and around the world begin spending again on information technology, according to a new report by Forrester Research, Inc. After declining 8.2 percent in 2009, U.S. IT spending will grow 6.6 percent in 2010 to $568 billion. Global IT spending, which dropped 8.9 percent last year, will rise 8.1 percent in 2010 to more than $1.6 trillion. Software and computer hardware will see the greatest growth, as Forrester forecasts a new multi-year cycle of technology investment growth and innovation defined by Smart Computing. The Forrester forecast provides vendor strategy professionals with recommendations regarding how to align their sales and marketing efforts to the current and future environment for IT spending.

“The technology downturn of 2008 and 2009 is unofficially over,” said Andrew Bartels, Forrester Research vice president and principal analyst. “All the pieces are in place for a 2010 tech spending rebound. In the US, the tech recovery will be much stronger than the overall economic recovery, with technology spending growing at more than twice the rate of gross domestic product (GDP) this year.”

With regard to sector growth, hardware and software will lead the charge. Measured in U.S. dollars, global purchases of computer equipment will be up 8.2 percent, communications equipment buying will rise by 7.6 percent, software spending will increase by 9.7 percent, purchases of IT consulting and systems integration services will grow by 6.8 percent, and IT outsourcing services will be 7.1 percent higher.

On a regional basis, Europe will be the strongest performing region. Measured in US dollars, the strongest growth in 2010 will be in Western and Central Europe, where tech purchases will rise by 11.2 percent, boosted by the dollar’s decline against the euro. IT purchases in Canada will grow by 9.9 percent, Asia Pacific by 7.8 percent, and Latin America by 7.7 percent. The weakest market will be Eastern Europe, the Middle East, and Africa, rising by just 2.4 percent. When measured against local currency, however, the US will actually post the strongest growth of all the regional tech markets.

“We are entering a new six-to-seven-year cycle of IT growth and innovation that Forrester calls Smart Computing,” said Bartels. “New technologies of awareness married to advanced business intelligence analytics make computing smart. Smart Computing rests on new foundation technologies such as service-oriented architecture, server and storage virtualization, cloud computing, and unified communications. 2010 marks the beginning of this next phase of technology advancement.”

Select Forrester clients can access the 38-page “U.S. and Global IT Market Outlook: Q4 2009” report, which includes a more detailed breakdown of IT spending by sector and region.

About Forrester Research

Forrester Research, Inc. (Nasdaq: FORR) is an independent research company that provides pragmatic and forward-thinking advice to global leaders in business and technology. Forrester works with professionals in 20 key roles at major companies providing proprietary research, consumer insight, consulting, events, and peer-to-peer executive programs. For more than 26 years, Forrester has been making IT, marketing, and technology industry leaders successful every day. For more information, visit www.forrester.com.

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