IDC Reports an Increase in Open Source Growth

IDC released a report last week with an optimistic outlook for open source software. Here's what IDC had to say:
"Worldwide revenue from open source software (OSS) will grow at a 22.4% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) to reach $8.1 billion by 2013. This forecast is considerably higher than 2008 for three reasons: (1) the bottom-up list used to calculate the revenue has expanded through an exhaustive effort to include more projects in this forecast; (2) open source software has had a much higher level of acceptance over the past 12 months than previously expected, and; (3) the economy accelerated the uptake and use of open source software in the closing months of 2008."

"The open source software market has seen a strong boost from the current economic crisis," said Michael Fauscette, group vice president, Software Business Solutions. "OSS is increasingly a part of the enterprise software strategy of leading businesses and is seeing mainstream adoption at a strong pace. As the overall software industry continues to consolidate, it will be key for OSS vendors to reach scale if they plan to continue as a standalone business."

IDC cites the economy as one reason for their increased revenue forecast for open source. In a previous post, I talked about how the current economy has been good for open source, and you can see from my earlier post that IDC isn't the only one with that opinion. Since this is a longer term forecast (2013), I will be curious to see if the increases that we are seeing as a result of economic forces continue during more prosperous times, or whether these increases are something more temporary. I suspect that the trend will continue even after a recovery. Those companies who are starting to use open source now are probably more likely to continue using it regardless of any changes in the economy.

IDC also points to another reason for the increase in open source software revenue. "Large software vendors like IBM, Sun, Dell, HP, and Oracle are making significant amounts of indirect revenue from their activities with and support of OSS. This has greatly aided mainstream adoption and acceptance of OSS." When any technology is picked up by the large software vendors, like the list above, it provides others with a sense of credibility and legitimacy. This support from the big vendors will tend to drive increases in adoption for smaller vendors and within IT departments.

What other trends are you seeing for open source adoption?
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