Gartner: Global IT spending to rise in 2010; watch for Europe concerns

Global IT spending should continue to rise - but not at the same uptick previously forecast, a reaction to concerns about the European economy.
Written by Sam Diaz, Inactive

IT spending around the globe in 2010 is still expected to grow beyond its 2009 levels, but Gartner has lowered its outlook for the IT industry from growth of 5.3 percent for the year to growth of 3.9 percent, a response to uncertainty in the European economy, according to a recent report issued by Gartner.

In all, Gartner expects worldwide IT spending to total $3.350 trillion this year, up from $3.225 trillion last year. In a statement, Gartner's research VP Richard Gordon said:

Longer-term, public-sector spending will be curtailed in Europe as governments struggle to bring budget deficits under control during the next five years and to reduce debt during the next 10 years. Private-sector economic activity will also likely be hindered because of the direct impact of austerity measures on key government suppliers and the indirect impact caused by the 'ripple effect.' An effective policy response will be critical to stimulate investment in general and in IT in particular.

Computer hardware spending, benefiting from a healthy PC sector, is forecast to reach $365 billion in 2010, a gain of 9.1 percent over 2009 spending. PC shipments are expected to remain strong through 2011, with consumer shipments powered by strong interest in mobile and professional shipments sparked by a replacement cycle and migration to Windows 7.

Despite the perception that 2010 is a "return to growth" year, Gordon warns that the spending forecasts remain "vulnerable to shocks" in key regions and industries and that IT spending decisions are still scrutinized for their value.

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