ICT spending will reach $5.6 trillion in 2021, says IDC

ICT spending on IT, telecom services and new technologies will grow to $5.6 trillion by 2021 from $4.3 trillion in 2016, representing a CAGR of 6 percent.

Annual growth will accelerate through the forecast period, from 5.5 percent in 2017 to 6.5 percent in 2021, as new technologies account for a growing proportion of the overall market, according to IDC.

Traditional ICT spending (IT and telecom) is a mature sector of the economy, as many technology markets continue to saturate and commoditize. The growth of cloud will cannibalize from traditional ICT revenues, concentrating more IT capital spending into the hands of large cloud service providers.

Traditional IT spending will grow at an annual rate of 3-4 percent through the next five years, while telecom spending increases by approximately 1 percent per year.

New ICT spending from categories such as IoT, cognitive AI, robotics, AR/VR, 3D printing, and next-gen security (called Innovation Accelerators) will grow by 17 percent in 2017, and will continue to accelerate over the next five years.

IoT, robotics, and AR/VR in particular will come to represent a significant proportion of the overall ICT market by 2021.

The Innovation Accelerators will drive the next wave of 3rd Platform growth, resulting in the 3rd Platform — of cloud, mobile, big data and analytics and social — accounting for 75 percent of ICT spending by 2021.

Asia Pacific accounted for more than 50 percent of global IoT spending in 2016 but only 6 percent of investment in cognitive AI. The growth of investment in mobile infrastructure and software solutions will come to drive these regions to the next level of 3rd Platform innovation.

Global technology spending will exceed $3 trillion by 2018. Forrester’s updated global tech market outlook estimates that global tech spending will exceed $3 trillion for the first time ever. This growth is attributed to diminishing business fears about the future following the political and economic disruption of 2016.

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