Will 2003 be the year in which web services mature? A new white paper published by IDC says that web services applications are increasing, having touched a large proportion of North American organisations by the end of 2002, suggesting that there may be an open market for providers of these solutions during 2003.
As the interest surrounding web services gathers pace, IDC says that vendors need a clear understanding of which applications are being deployed, along with knowledge of how these applications vary by vertical market and company size segments, and also the necessary data and analysis to confront adoption inhibitors. This information is provided in the study, Will 2003 Be the Year of Web Services? Adoption Status and Customer Directions.
The white paper provides findings and analysis that emerged from a recent IDC Enterprise Technology Trends Survey intended to understand and measure North American organisations' current and expected plans for web services adoption and implementation. Findings are included for three company size segments, defined as small (10-99 employees), medium sized (100-999 employees), and large (1,000+ employees), and for the 18 industry segments of the North American market.
The study offers insights into organisations' and public sector entities' uses of web services-related solutions and technologies, the time line and budgets for investments in these technologies, applications being deployed in a web services environment, and adoption inhibitors.
Although web services is a relatively new concept it has emerged strongly, with 54.6% of North American organisations reporting that they use web services (or that implementation is currently in progress).
Large organisations proved most likely to be using web services in 2002. In fact, the size of the organisation is positively correlated with the adoption of such a solution.
Web services has penetrated some vertical markets more than others. Wide-spread adoption is under way in the finance sector, with banking being in the lead (nearly three-quarters of banks report that they are implementing or already using web services). Other segments of the finance sector represent near-term prospects, with roughly half planning to implement web services within the next 12 months, or evaluating the technology.
Small organisations expect a shorter time frame for investments, whilst around half of the midsize companies that have not yet invested in web services do not expect to do so before 2005.
According to Lucie Draper, programme manager for IDC's Enterprise Technology Trends programme, and author of the study, "Web services is a relatively new concept, and many North American organisations are just beginning to consider these types of projects."
Vendors of web services will certainly have to overcome the scepticism that many still hold about it, and demonstrate achievable benefits by proving the technology's financial value.
Further details can be obtained by purchasing the white paper from IDC.