Press Release

STAMFORD, Conn., May 14, 2009 View All Press Releases

Gartner Says Financial Crisis Is Delaying, More Than Cancelling, Client Computing Projects

Certain Applications, Countries and Vertical Markets Provide Some Optimism for Technology and Service Providers

The financial crisis has had a significant impact on the client computing industry in 2009, as witnessed in a survey by Gartner, Inc. that showed far more PC projects are postponed or scaled back this year rather than cancelled outright because of tighter IT budgets. Only 12 percent of those surveyed indicated they have outright cancelled a planned project since October 2008.  

The survey was conducted from late February through early March of 2009. Respondents included 475 IT decision makers in enterprises with 1,000 or more employees (except in Australia, where companies with as few as 500 workers were contacted). Respondents were from nine countries, including Australia, Brazil, China, France, Germany, India, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States.

"Enterprise belt-tightening has had a tremendous impact on the client computing technology segment with 43 percent of respondents expecting a decrease in spending on client computing hardware in 2009 compared with 2008," said Andrew Johnson, managing vice president at Gartner.

Gartner forecasts overall IT spending to decline 3.7 percent in 2009. Spending on IT hardware, including client computing (PCs), servers, storage and printing systems will bear the brunt of budget cuts with spending expected to decline 14.9 percent. Gartner forecasts overall IT spending to rebound with 2.4 percent growth in 2010, although IT hardware spending will continue to lag next year, growing just 0.8 percent.

Despite the bleak outlook, Mr. Johnson said that there are some brighter spots for the segment with certain applications getting increased spending and some countries and industries reporting more-optimistic plans. He said that more client computing projects will be postponed or reduced in 2009 than will be eliminated, and technology and service providers should ensure that they are ready for the recovery, when and where it happens.

The survey pinpointed some important differences in how companies in different countries are maintaining, delaying, reducing or canceling many ongoing client computing projects. Although 48 percent of all respondents indicated some of their PC projects would be deployed as planned in 2009, respondents in China (85 percent) and India (64 percent) were more optimistic and expected most of their projects to be deployed as planned. In contrast, only 29 percent of U.S. and 18 percent of French companies planned to continue their client computing projects as originally planned.

Significant vertical market variations were also revealed by the survey which found that the industries most on track with their client computing plans were insurance, media and consumer business services. Companies involved with telecommunications, wholesale, and agriculture, mining and construction are most likely to be planning to reduce spending. Postponements are more likely in retail, utilities and wholesale companies, and project cancellations were above average in discrete manufacturing. Only one out of 45 respondents in the financial services industry indicated PC purchase plans were cancelled, and in this sector, reduced, postponed, and as-planned responses came in near the averages.

Additional information is available in the Gartner report "User Survey Analysis: The Impact of the Financial Crisis on Client Computing Projects, Worldwide, 2009." The report is available on Gartner's Web site at http://www.gartner.com/DisplayDocument?ref=g_search&id=953712&subref=simplesearch.

Analysts will provide additional analysis in the complimentary briefing "Gartner Hardware Insight 2009: Strategies for Demystifying and Weathering the Global Economic Crisis" on May 19 at the Sofitel Redwood City, in Redwood City, California. The briefing will examine the evolving IT infrastructure portfolio with sessions examining the outlook for the PC and client computing segment, servers, printers, and storage. Those interested in attending the briefing can register at http://www.gartnerinfo.com/lb691051909/index.php?e=f50fc2478b2146ce66d26b9e22932baal99078043.

Contacts
About Gartner

Gartner, Inc. (NYSE: IT), is the world's leading research and advisory company and a member of the S&P 500. We equip business leaders with indispensable insights, advice and tools to achieve their mission-critical priorities and build the successful organizations of tomorrow.

Our unmatched combination of expert-led, practitioner-sourced and data-driven research steers clients toward the right decisions on the issues that matter most. We're trusted as an objective resource and critical partner by more than 12,000 organizations in more than 100 countries—across all major functions, in every industry and enterprise size.

To learn more about how we help decision makers fuel the future of business, visit www.gartner.com.

Comments or opinions expressed on this blog are those of the individual contributors only, and do not necessarily represent the views of Gartner, Inc. or its management. Readers may copy and redistribute blog postings on other blogs, or otherwise for private, non-commercial or journalistic purposes. This content may not be used for any other purposes in any other formats or media. The content on this blog is provided on an "as-is" basis. Gartner shall not be liable for any damages whatsoever arising out of the content or use of this blog.