Consumers will spend $2.1 trillion worldwide on digital information and entertainment products and services in 2012, Gartner has predicted.
According to the analyst firm, this amounts to a $114bn global increase compared with 2011, and spending will continue to grow at a faster rate than in the past, at around $130bn a year, to reach $2.7 trillion by the end of 2016.
Mobile phones, computing and entertainment, and media and other smart devices will make up the $2.1 trillion spend, said the firm, alongside software and media content consumed on these devices.
Amanda Sabia, principal research analyst at Gartner, said: “The three largest segments of the consumer technology market are, and will continue to be, mobile services, mobile phones and entertainment services.
“There are two product classes, which in terms of absolute dollars are significantly smaller, but offer tremendous growth by 2016. These are mobile apps stores and e-text content. We fully expect consumers to more than triple their spending in these latter two categories by 2016.”
Gartner also forecasted that mobile services are expected to generate 37% of total worldwide consumer technology spending in 2012 ($0.8 trillion), rising to almost $1 trillion by 2016. Mobile phones will account for 10% of total spending in 2012 ($222bn) rising to almost $300bn by 2016.
Similarly, entertainment services — cable, satellite, IPTV and online gaming, will account for 10% of total consumer spending on technology products and services in 2012, at $210bn, rising to almost $290bn in 2016, said the analyst firm.
Consumer spending on mobile apps stores and content is expected to rise from $18bn in 2012 to $61bn by 2016.
Sabia added: “Our research consistently shows that consumers are willing to pay for content they deem ‘worth it’. However, our research has also found that consumers are willing to tolerate an ad-supported business model in exchange for free functions and content such as personal Cloud storage, social networking, information searching, email, IM, person-to-person (P2P) voice (Skype and mobile voice over IP, streaming/downloading video and musical content when accessing the internet.”