After a quick hit on Intel CEO Craig Barrett's on stage encounters with Aerosmith rocker Steven Tyler I interview THINKStrategies founder and managing director
Jeff Kaplan in ZDNet's second podcast (download the MP3, or get it through the RSS feed). Kaplan gazes into his crystal ball for utility computing, managed
services, outsourcing, and the IT research sectors in 2005.
Kaplan also gives advice for potentially displaced IT workers
and identifies the companies to watch as a growing percentage of IT
budgets are allocated to services versus capital
While Kaplan says that IBM, HP, EMC, Sun and Oracle are moving into position to take advantage of the shift in IT culture, that doesn't mean they're out of the woods just yet. HP for example fumbled its utility strategy in 2004 and has a consumer strategy that Kaplan says is a distraction as long as the company isn't broken up. More management changes could be on the way there while, at Computer Associates and Microsoft, adjustment away from annuity-based revenue streams are imperative for those companies to survive the new IT order.
For IT workers that have been or could be displaced, it's time to stop commiserating says Kaplan, and instead, start forming a plan of attack which includes picking up the necessary skills to stay competitive in a global economy. Consolidation is far from over and Kaplan predicts a mop-up of many of the services sector's smaller players. Finally, on the heels of Gartner acquiring the META Group, Kaplan talks about the shrinking demand for IT research and balance that large research outfits must strike betweeen servicing vendors and enterprise buyers without creating brand-threatening conflicts of interest.