More than $US2 trillion was spent worldwide on information and communications technology last year, and the market is expected to continue to boom, topping $US3 trillion by 2004, according to a study released today by the World Information Technology and Services Alliance (WITSA).
Information and communications technology includes computer hardware, software, services, telecommunications and related expenditures. The study is based on data provided by International Data Corp in Framingham, Massachusetts, and was released at the World Congress of Information Technology.
In 1995, the information and communications technology market was just over $US1.5 trillion.
The study also pointed to a shift in the areas of technology spending. While the hardware market grew by 6 per cent last year, the software and services segments increased by 14 per cent and 10 per cent, respectively.
The shift represents the growing importance of the internet economy, according to the study. In 1999, there was $US130 billion in Internet purchases; that's expected to increase to $US2.5 trillion by 2004, the study said.
North America led other world regions with about $US800 billion in information and communications spending; Europe was just under $US600 billion.
The top 10 nations in per-capita spending, ranging from about $US3250 down to $US2000, were Switzerland, Japan, the US, Sweden, Denmark, Singapore, Norway, the Netherlands, the UK and Australia.
WITSA is an umbrella organisation for IT trade associations worldwide.