Worldwide application development software to ripple this year

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Gartner forcasts a buoyant market

The worldwide application development (AD) software market is expected to increase by 1.8 percent in 2012, Gartner has said. That doesn’t sound like much, but the sector is worth a king’s ransom.

According to the company the market will reach more than $9 billion in 2012 as a result of evolving software delivery models, new development methodologies, emerging mobile application development and open source software.

Asheesh Raina, principal research analyst at Gartner, said: “Application modernisation and increasing agility will continue to be a solid driver for AD spending, apart from other emerging dynamics of cloud, mobility and social computing.”

“These emerging trends are directing AD demand towards newer architectures, programming languages, business model and user skills.”

According to the company cloud is also changing the way applications are designed, tested and deployed, which has had an effect on AD priorities.

The company said cost was a major driver, but pointed out that so was agility, flexibility and speed to deploy new applications.

It added that 90 percent of large, mainstream enterprises and government agencies will use some aspect of cloud computing by 2015.

“The trend is compelling enough to force traditional AD vendors to ‘cloud-enable’ their existing offerings and position them as a service to be delivered through the cloud,” said Mr. Raina.

“AD for cloud demands rapid deployment, a high focus on user experience and access to highly elastic resources for software testing, while requiring comparatively less underlying infrastructure for developing applications.”

Gartner also forecast that mobile AD projects targeting smartphones and tablets will outnumber native PC projects by a ratio of 4:1 by 2015.

It said emerging mobile applications, systems and devices were transforming the AD space rapidly, and were one of the top three CIO priorities at the enterprise level.

To back up its claims, it pointed to its own research, which found that CIOs expected more than 20 percent of their employees to use tablets instead of laptops by 2013, hastening the process of change as AD tools and applications evolve to address the requirements of these new devices.

Also driving the AD shift, Gartner said it expected open source software to continue to broaden its presence and create pressure on market leaders during the next three to five years, especially as open source becomes a key element of the software quality landscape beyond the developer level.

The company predicted that at least 70 percent of new enterprise Java applications will be deployed on an open source Java application server by the end of 2017.

“Open source software tools will continue to erode revenue for some AD categories in design, testing and Web development,” said Mr. Raina.

“This is being driven primarily by the success of Eclipse and NetBeans, as well as by overall revitalisation of the market by new small software providers looking for technical and market disruptive approaches for offering products.

“Limited budgets and economic conditions compelling enough to focus on cost reduction, also fuel the use of open-source software in various development projects.”

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