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. That is the view of two of Gartner’s leading analysts, who have underlined earlier forecasts of strong demand for integration products. They stress demand will extend beyond the largest suppliers to many of the smaller ones, although consolidation is still likely.
Gartner’s leading European middleware analyst, Massimo Pezzini, says that overall corporate IT spending is set to rise slightly, and, from this increase, more will be spent on middleware, integration and enterprise application.
At present, only one in 10 projects involve 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, says Gartner’s Charles Abrams. Echoing 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.
Ross Altman, chief technology officer of SeeBeyond, says that “a rising tide lifts all boats” and expects that both SeeBeyond and its various competitors will do well.