Gartner: EMEA IT spending will grow next year after gloomy 2012

This year will see IT spending in Western Europe drop by 5.9 percent

IT spending in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) will reach US$1.154 trillion in 2013, a 1.4 percent increase from this year, thanks to the increasing popularity of mobile devices, market research company Gartner said on Monday.

In 2012, Gartner estimates that IT spending will decline by 3.6 percent in EMEA, and by 5.9 percent in Western Europe compared to last year. However, after returning to growth next year, the EMEA region will continue to grow through 2016 when spending will reach $1.247 trillion.

The growth will in part come from enterprises spending more money on software for smartphones and tablets, which are the current "bright spot" of the IT industry, according to Gartner. Traditional software providers are rewriting their applications for tablets and enterprises will upgrade, helping achieve a 3.1 percent boost in software spending next year, it said.

With the increased functionality of smartphones, and the increasing popularity of tablets, much of the network traffic and corporate data is now being shifted to mobile devices, according to Gartner.

While a growing number of enterprises are allowing employees to access email and personal information management functions, users are pushing for more enterprise applications to be supported on the tablet, it said.

More enterprise data on smartphones and tablets will also increase the need for increasingly advanced mobile device management software.

"That segment is growing by 40 to 50 percent per year and we see that continuing going forward," said Leif-Olof Wallin, research vice president at Gartner.

By 2016, two-thirds of the workforce will have a smartphone or tablet device.

Gartner provided the outlook for IT spending at its Symposium/ITxpo 2012 taking place in Barcelona through Nov. 8. Over 4,000 CIOs and other IT leaders are attending the event, Gartner said.

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