Business spends b-b-b-big on Big Data

IT organizations will spend 28 billion bucks on Big Data this year, Gartner says today. Expect $34 billion next year, if the forecast holds true. But big spending surprisingly doesn't much benefit enterprise software vendors. Most of the money goes into adapting what businesses already have, with the trend generating just $4.3 billion in software sales this year.

"Despite the hype, big data is not a distinct, stand-alone market", Mark Beyer, Gartner research vice president, says, "but represents an industrywide market force which must be addressed in products, practices and solution delivery". Biggest spending, some 45 percent a year, goes into content analytics and social network analysis -- that sounds like "data mining" to me. But, hey, analysts make money coining terms and offering consulting services around them.

"In 2011, Big Data formed a new driver in almost every category of IT spending", Beyer claims. "However, through 2018, Big Data requirements will gradually evolve from differentiation to 'table stakes' in information management practices and technology. By 2020, Big Data features and functionality will be non-differentiating and routinely expected from traditional enterprise vendors and part of their product offerings".

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Another change is more immediate, with Gartner predicting that leading-edge IT organizations will incorporate Big Data into their business practices and systems architectures by 2015.

"Big Data will evolve to become a standardized requirement in leading information architectural practices, forcing older practices and technology into early obsolescence", Beyer predicts. "As a result, Big Data will once again become 'just data' by 2020 and architectural approaches, infrastructure and hardware/software that does not adapt to this 'new normal' will be retired. Organizations resisting this change will suffer severe economic impacts".

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