APAC IT spend to hit $743B in 2013

Companies in the region are expected to increase their IT spend by 7.9 percent next year to US$743 billion, driving growth in all five key segments including devices and data center systems.
Written by Eileen Yu, Senior Contributing Editor

Companies in the Asia-Pacific region will fork out US$743 billion next year for IT goods and services, expanding their budget by 7.9 percent over 2012.

In a statement released Wednesday, Gartner added spending in all five key IT segments were expected to see growth:

•  telecom services will increase 4.8 percent to US$359.4 billion;
•  devices--which include tablets, mobile phones and printers--will increase 12.3 percent to US$229.7 billion;
•  IT services will see a 7.5 percent climb to US$91.5 billion;
•  software spend will go up 11.9 percent to US$33.9 billion; and
• data center systems will climb 9.5 percent to US$28.6 billion.

The region also is on track to meet the 7.6 percent growth in IT spend by end-2012, said Gartner's senior vice president and global research head, Peter Sondergaard, during his keynote address at the Gartner Symposium/ITxpo in Gold Coast, Australia, this week.

"As global markets improve in 2013 and resume growth, Asia-Pacific remains one of the bright spots of the global IT market, allowing organizations in this region to accelerate competitiveness," said Sondergaard. He added these companies will innovate and compete using a combination of cloud, mobile, social and information.

In fact, the research firm believes, by 2014, most IT hiring in key Western markets will come from Asia-based companies clocking high growth, even as their peers from the West continue to struggle with the impact of the economic crisis.

"An increasing number of successful Asian companies, particularly from China and India, are enjoying double-digit growth rates and will substantially grow their geographic footprint, making significant investments in major Western markets through 2015," Sondergaard noted.

A separate report from Gartner last month projected India's IT expenditure will hit US$71.5 billion next year, with investments in telecommunications driving overall spend.  

According to stats from IDC released in May, China's IT spend in 2013 is expected to reach US$173 billion, driven primarily by increasing demand for consumer IT and opportunities spurred by the Chinese government's 12th Five-Year plan. 

Big data to create jobs
According to Gartner, by 2015, demand associated with big data will create 4.4 million IT jobs worldwide, 960,000 of which will be in the Asia-Pacific region. In addition, every role related to big data will create employment for another three people outside the IT industry, producing a total of 4 million jobs in the region. Big data skills, though, are still lacking so only a third of the IT role will be filled.

Gartner urged governments and businesses to focus on education and skills development to plug the gap and remain competitive. Sondergaard said organizations must find ways to deal with hybrid data--the combination of structured and unstructured data--and extract real value out of data:

The research firm also elaborated on the mobile market where over 1.6 billion smart devices will be purchased worldwide in 2016, and two-third of the mobile workforce will own a smartphone.

By end-2014, Apple's iPad tablet will be more common than RIM BlackBerries in the enterprise space. By 2018, 70 percent of mobile workers will use a tablet or hybrid device with tablet-like features.


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