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Asia: From a market of millions to millions of markets

Claus Mortensen | Jan. 17, 2014
IDC envisions 2014 to be a year of transformation for vendors and service providers in the ICT space.

International Data Corporation (IDC) expects ICT spending growth in the Asia/Pacific (excluding Japan) region to be 6.6% in 2013 followed by an accelerated growth of 8.7% this year.

Although the growth outlook for overall ICT spending of the region in 2013 is slightly lower than what IDC anticipated in last year's Predictions, IDC expects the region to rebound in 2014, driven by large markets like China, and emerging markets like India and Indonesia.

The nature of spending has changed significantly. Smartphones continue their grip on overall IT spending in the region. Smartphones will account for more than 35% of overall IT (which excludes telecom services) spending in 2013 and IDC expects they will account for nearly 40% by 2017.

But it is not just about devices. Big data, cloud, mobility and social will have a huge impact on how IT is adopted in 2014. Marketing will be perhaps the biggest driver for the use of cutting edge IT as they seek new innovative ways to reach out to and sell to customers.

No business safe from disruption

IDC envisions 2014 to be a year of transformation for vendors and service providers in the ICT space. No vendor's or service provider's business is safe from disruption in today's market. Third platform technologies are revolutionizing the areas of software, communications, hardware and even services.

IDC has been urging telecom providers to look at investing in adjacent areas of business, but the advice extends equally to other types of service providers and vendors. It is already happening - web companies are becoming banks; mobile apps and mobile commerce are opening up a Pandora's Box of new entrants with direct access to consumers and businesses alike.

The following trends are what IDC believes will have the biggest commercial impact on the APeJ ICT market.

1. BYOD as an enterprise mobility strategy is dead

BYOD will continue to dig deeper in Asia/Pacific. IDC believes that close to 90 million smartphones shipped in 2013 will be employee liable, or under a BYOD scheme - a 269% increase over 2012. But BYOD is a compromise between users and the enterprise; the company will reluctantly allow users to use their own devices at work, and in return users reluctantly do work on their own devices.

In view of that, IDC expects a new trend to emerge: Eligible users will be given a choice of devices that they can use for work, also referred to as the "Choose Your Own Device" (CYOD) model. Organizations evaluating mobility strategically will look to CYOD as the main adoption model where management and security can be standardized and guaranteed, and business processes can be mobilized. Just as 2013 is the year where enterprises in Asia/Pacific realized they needed more than mobile device management (MDM) solutions, 2014 is the year where they realize BYOD as a mobility strategy is dead.


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