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Will Broadband Britain fare better in 2002?

Next year's winners and losers will be...
Written by Suzanna Kerridge, Contributor

Next year's winners and losers will be...

As 2002 comes to a close, industry analysts have dusted off their crystal balls and begun to predict likely technology winners and losers for next year. Broadband will continue to make a mark across Europe next year as providers fine-tune their offerings, said Dan Stevenson, analyst at Jupiter MMXI. Uptake of DSL in the UK will increase threefold as BT continues its unbundling process. Stevenson said: "BT will finally get its act together and improve the installation process and marketing of DSL. There is also a strong chance that prices will fall." However, uptake will still be relatively small in comparison to other European countries. Belgium and Sweden will lead the way as broadband connections top 12 and 18 per cent respectively. Clive Longbottom, director at Quocirca, claimed mobile computing will be less of a buzz-word and more of a reality next year. He said: "People will really start to look at what it means to have a mobile workforce. True wireless mobility will become a reality as vendors start to create realistic stories to maintain working between buildings." But whatever happens, 2002 has to be a better year for the industry than 2001, said John Gantz, analyst at IDC. He predicted China will be an IT winner next year as the country's IT spending starts to outstrip European expenditure. "China's interest in the World Trade Organisation will prop up the blistering rate of IT spend," he said. "We predict it will be bigger than Italy's by 2005 and bigger than all of Europe's by 2010." However, along with the winners are the also-rans. The technology losers in 2002 will be Windows XP and web services, according to IDC's Gantz. He said: "Windows XP will still be a non-event as there are hardware issues - the server options are confusing, there are licensing issues and enterprises will just not roll it out. "While web services are going to be way over-hyped. I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that the ability to build applications on the fly with code from different companies will be too hard to do. It's not going to happen."
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