Global information technology spending is expected grow 3.1 percent in 2014 compared to 2013 to total $3.8 trillion, according to Gartner. IT spending globally was flat in 2013, up just 0.4 percent from 2012.
Gartner's IT spending forecast is much more conservative that the one provided by Forrester, which last week said that global expenditures would grow 6.2 percent in 2014 (5.5 percent in constant currency). The one wrinkle is that Gartner counts spending for telecom services in its forecast and Forrester excludes it. Telecom services accounts for 40 percent of total IT services and Gartner lowered its 2014 forecast. Gartner said that telecom services spending is "the main reason behind this overall IT spending growth reduction."
According to Gartner, spending on enterprise software will remain strong in 2014 and grow at a 6.8 percent clip. Customer relationship management applications and supply chain software will lead the pack. Forrester was also optimistic about on-premise software sales.
Spending on devices (PCs, mobile phones and tablets) will grow 4.3 percent in 2014 following a 1.2 percent dip in 2013. Gartner projects that device convergence will hurt profit margins. In other words, price will drive device purchases in the future.
Data center systems spending is expected to grow 2.6 percent in 2014, but that tally is down from Gartner's previous forecast of 2.9 percent. Why? Storage and enterprise communications spending is expected to come in lower than expected. Gartner added that data center build out plans are being reconsidered as CIOs look to cloud computing.