New technologies lift Western Europe IT spending

IT spending in Western Europe will total $453.8bn in 2017, a 2.7% increase compared with 2016, according to analyst house IDC. And IT spending will continue to grow at a modest 2% five-year CAGR until 2021, IDC added.

Investments in “3rd Platform” solutions and “Innovation Accelerator” technologies — such as augmented reality/virtual reality (AR/VR), artificial intelligence (AI) and cognitive, robotics, 3D printing, and Internet of Things (IoT) — will “drive demand” as companies strive to innovate, increase customer experience and streamline business processes, said IDC.

In 2017, consumer, banking, and discrete manufacturing will be the vertical markets with the biggest IT spending, accounting for over a third of overall Western European spend. IDC forecasts that retail, professional services and telecommunications will be the fastest growing markets in 2017, and they will continue to lead on growth in 2018.

In the longer term, professional services, retail and process manufacturing will generate the fastest 2017–2021 CAGR.

Andrea Minonne, an analyst at IDC, said: "Technologies such as mobility, social media, cloud and Big Data helped companies to introduce change and move from a traditional approach to a more digitised one. With next-generation technologies companies will go the extra mile, move one step ahead of the competition and fully embrace digital transformation.”

Both businesses and their customers will benefit as companies optimise processes and bring “extreme automation” into play, said Minonne.