Spend, Spend, Spend: it's good news for IT

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According to Gartner you, as in everyone, will start spending more on IT this year. Richard Gordon, a research vice president with the information technology analyst outfit, says that strong fourth quarter sales along with "an unseasonably robust hardware supply chain in the first quarter of 2010" plus a little bit of global economical recovery thrown in "sets up 2010 for solid IT spending growth".

Indeed, Gartner predicts that worldwide IT spending will reach a total $3.4 trillion in 2010. That's a 5.3 percent increase from the IT spending of $3.2 trillion during 2009, the industry should show continued and steady growth with spending in 2011 projected to surpass $3.5 trillion, or a further 4.2 percent increase.

As for computing hardware specifically, Gartner is forecasting that worldwide spending will reach $353 billion in 2010, that's a 5.7 percent increase from 2009. Enterprise hardware spending, though, might be set to grow again this year but will still stay below its 2008 level right through 2014.

"Computing hardware suffered the steepest spending decline of the four major IT spending category segments in 2009. However, it is now forecast to enjoy the joint strongest rebound in 2010" said George Shiffler, another research director at Gartner. "Consumer PC spending will contribute nearly 4 percentage points of hardware spending growth in 2010, powered by strong consumer spending on mobile PCs. Additionally, professional PC spending will contribute just over 1 percentage point of spending growth in 2010 as organizations begin their migration to Windows 7 toward the end of the year."

Richard Gordon does point out, however that "nearly 4 percentage points of this growth will be the result of a projected decline in the value of the dollar relative to last year" which means that, if you look at IT spending in exchange-rate-adjusted dollars terms, will actually grow by just 1.6 percent this year, following a drop of 1.4 percent in 2009. Still growth, for sure, but not quite as impressive as a first glance might suggest.