AMI-Partners has shared five key trends to dominate the Indian ICT market in 2015.
Five ICT trends
Convergence of IT and Mobile Applications
End-user market segments need to access and use information across platforms and devices. The same applications are required to run across access points from traditional PCs to mobile devices with varying capabilities—e.g. smartphones, tablets and 2-in-1 convertibles. Businesses are focusing on agility, and they’re ready to use solutions that can help them achieve their goals. These solutions need to be device agnostic, interoperate across networks, and lead to organizational efficiencies and agility.
Datacenter Hosting and Co-Location
Microsoft decided to set up dedicated datacenter operations in India to boost its Azure platform. 2015 could see greater opportunities for datacenter hosting and co-location service providers. Government agencies and municipal bodies, and businesses subject to strict security regulations that prohibit data being hosted outside the country, are keen to explore its benefits. This shift in marketplace dynamics could expand the potential for datacenter hosting and co-location services in 2015.
Remote Managed IT Services (RMITS)
Interest in and awareness of remote managed IT services (RMITS) is high, especially among smaller businesses. These firms lack adequate internal IT resources to manage their ICT infrastructure. They rely on third parties such as channel partners for support. A number of SMBs prefer a hybrid ICT support scenario whereby they can avail themselves of the best of both worlds — on-premise solutions as well as remote managed IT services from service providers.
Rather than relying on traditional marketing tools like print advertisements and flyers for information about new products, users are turning to friends’ and colleagues’ reviews and perceptions to garner more information.
Presently many organizations do have a limited presence in social media, but they have not been able to effectively utilize this as a marketing tool, nor to integrate social media into their strategic marketing plan. Marketers are tying their SM activities — on platforms such as Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn etc. — to achieve their business goals.
Big Data and Analytics
Big data and analytics have emerged as technology buzzwords in recent years, yet adoption of such solutions has been limited. However, 2015 should see a large number of enterprises shifting away from conventional investments and focusing on these areas. A key priority for medium and large businesses will be to harness and analyze big data to derive insights into how products and services are being received, and how efficiently assets are utilized. Enterprises in India are keen to focus on using fact-based decision-making tools to rationalize costs and time for businesses, and to hasten the decision-making process and make it more innovative. This focus on big data will naturally lead to a growth in usage of predictive analytics—solutions that can gather, manage and make sense of the organization’s big data.
Shifts in the ICT Marketplace:
The traditional hardware-focused channel model is virtually non-existent today due to dwindling margins. Online channels (Amazon / Flipkart et al.) have emerged as a clear threat to traditional routes to market in terms of the end-client space, since the former enjoy huge price advantages. Moreover, nowadays most IT players are trying to jump onto the services bandwagon in an effort to beef up bottom lines, since the primary potential lies in services and solutions.
Second- and Third-Tier Cities Emerging
Tier II and III cities are emerging rapidly in recent days as their economy is on the rise, and also the businesses in these cities are enhancing their technological levels in a bid to compete with their counterparts in other advanced cities. The government is making an effort to improve the IT readiness and overall infrastructure of these Tier II cities through the Digital India program. Multiple ICT vendors are joining in this venture to assist the government in ICT development with the ultimate goal of transforming them into Smart Cities. This is likely to yield a huge opportunity for ICT vendors as well as channel partners.
E-Governance and Cloud
The government of India is likely to be one of the largest spenders on ICT products and services next year. One of its immediate priorities is to provide greater emphasis on getting the Mission Mode Projects (MMP) on track; many of those planned have not yet taken off.
Implementing e-governance practices at the center and also among the individual states is a huge pending task for the government—easier said than done. The government plans to adopt cloud computing in order to facilitate this task. To leverage the benefits of the cloud, the government has launched the National Cloud, MeghRaj, to accelerate delivery of e-services in the country.
Educational Institutes to Become IT-Savvy
Educational institutions have been increasingly utilizing ICT to automate daily business functions. They have been slowly adopting various solutions—right from end-to-end educational/ERP software that automates every step to other solutions that facilitate the learning process (e.g. exam management, assessment, online tests, collaboration, digital assessment, social learning exchange, etc)..
Apart from these specialized applications there is a continuous demand for IT in multiple areas—traditional hardware (PCs/ servers), software such as OS, mailing, security and storage/database management. Additional opportunities include content digitization, document archiving, and collaboration software and services.
The government of India has an ambitious plan to make The Internet of Things (IoT) a $15 billion market by 2020, and it has already launched initiatives to that end. This will definitely have an impact on almost all industry verticals such as agriculture, transportation, professional services, healthcare, energy, etc. The manufacturing sector will also be a major vertical for IoT in 2015. Use of newer business intelligence tools will help in predictive maintenance and optimization of processes and production. This is expected to result in financial and productive gains for manufacturers.