8 June 2004 There will be strong and in some cases explosive demand for web services and integration technology and services over the next five years as businesses react to the need for more integration and more agility, according to analysts Gartner.
In a remarkably bullish series of statements to the crowded Web Services and Integration conference in Amsterdam, two of Gartner’s leading analysts underlined earlier forecasts of strong demand for integration products. They stressed that demand will extend beyond the largest suppliers to many of the smaller ones, although some consolidation is still likely.
Gartner’s leading European middleware analyst, Massimo Pezzini, said that overall corporate IT spending is set to rise slightly, and that, from this increase, more will be spent on middleware, integration and enterprise application. These areas have persistently CIO surveys of top spending areas.
At present, only one in ten projects involves the use of an integration product. But this is set to increase during the next five years, according to Gartner. This will mean that more customers will use integration suites that are bundled with other products (from IBM, BEA Systems and Microsoft), as well as specialist products from suppliers such as SeeBeyond, Tibco and WebMethods. These suppliers have seen an uptick in licence revenues in recent months after several difficult years.
The web services market will grow dramatically, said web services analyst Charles Abrams. Echoing, perhaps, the over-exuberance of the dot-com era, he claimed that sales of web services enabled software products and services will grow from $61 billion to $316 billion between 2003 and 2007, with services accounting for $271 billion. Growth of services will be “explosive” said Abrams.
Ross Altman, the chief technology officer of SeeBeyond, and formerly Gartner’s research director for integration products, said that “a rising tide lifts all boats” and expects that both SeeBeyond and competitors will fare well.