- Global IT spending will reach $4.6 trillion, growing 5.5% in 2023, according to Gartner projections published Thursday. The projection marks an increase from the firm's January forecast, which said global IT spend would only grow 2.4% this year.
- The shift in the growth rate is mainly attributed to currency fluctuations, as a weaker U.S. dollar begins to blow tailwinds in IT spending trends, according to John-David Lovelock, distinguished VP analyst at Gartner.
- IDC, however, adjusted its worldwide IT spending forecast down Wednesday, projecting the spend at a more conservative $3.25 trillion in constant currency and a growth rate of 4.4% in 2023. The firm said tech investments reflect the impact of a weakening economy.
Even with signs of concern in the economy, enterprise technology spending hasn't lost its priority status as companies find ways to cut costs.
"What's been pushing IT spending growth this entire time is still the same thing that's been pushing it along since 2020, which is digital transformation," said Lovelock.
That transformation process is focused on revenue, Lovelock said, as companies evaluate how technology can:
- Bring on new revenue streams
- Bring new value propositions to market
- Get in front of customers more frequently, for longer periods of time and in more meaningful ways.
As this process unfolds, software has served as a central area of growth while other categories dip.
Gartner expects global software spending to grow 12.3% this year. In 2024, software spending is projected to grow another 13.1%, crossing the trillion dollar mark. By contrast, device spending will fall 4.6% this year, building on an almost 11% drop last year.
"We don't see the erosion of licensed software, but we see incremental, net-new dollar spending skew towards cloud still," Lovelock said.
While cloud infrastructure, software, and services are growing more slowly than a year ago according to IDC forecasts, these categories are "reinforcing the general sense of resilience which the industry still enjoys," said Stephen Minton, VP in IDC's Data & Analytics research group, in a release.
"Tech spending remains resilient compared to historical economic downturns and other types of business spending, but rising interest rates are now impacting capital spending," Minton said.