Mobile Devices, Environment Are Key Priorities for IT Pros in 2010

Gartner offers IT organizations predictions for 2010 and beyond, suggesting they take advantage of coming changes, rather than be hurt by them. Among its expectations are changes in the focus of IT departments, zooming mobile device use and a greater emphasis on environmental impact.

Gartner announced key predictions for IT organizations in 2010. In a recent report, the research firm highlighted trends and events that it believes will change the nature of business going forward.

Among these are changes to the focus and balance of power within IT departments, the environmental impacts of business, and the ways adults around the world will interact with technology.

"For many organizations, the economic and budgetary challenges of 2009 drove important changes in the general governance of IT investment decisions, accelerating the trend toward greater accountability and transparency," said Daryl Plummer, a Gartner managing vice president, in a Dec. 29 statement.

"With a strong emphasis on business-case justifications, chief financial officers assumed a more active role. Although most organizations enter 2010 preparing for a return to growth, this financial oversight is unlikely to be lifted anytime soon," Plummer continued. "For IT leaders, greater fluency in the language of business has become a requirement."

Among the changes to IT, Gartner predicts that by 2012, 20 percent of businesses will own no IT assets, as more companies take advantage of virtualization and cloud-enabled businesses. Also by 2012, the researcher expects India-centric IT service companies to represent 20 percent of the leading cloud aggregators.

Regarding environmental breakthroughs, by 2012, Gartner expects that 60 percent of a new PC's total life greenhouse gas emissions will have occurred before the user turns on the machine for the first time, thanks to advancement in PC energy use. Additionally, carbon remediation costs are expected to be included in most IT business cases by 2014.

"Incorporating carbon costs into business cases provides a further measure of savings, and prepares the organization for increased scrutiny of its carbon impact," states the report.

By 2013, more people will access the Internet via mobile phones than PCs, and by 2014, Gartner expects that more than 3 billion adults in the world be able to perform electronic transactions via mobile or Internet technology.

"Although not every individual with a mobile phone or Internet access will transact electronically, each will have the ability to do so," states the report. "Cash transaction will remain dominant in emerging markets by 2014, but the foundation for electronic transactions will be sell underway for much of the adult world."

Additional predictions touch on Internet marketing, hyper-personalized smartphone experiences and the increased use of Facebook as a hub for social network integration and socializing on the Web.

Gartner writes that it hopes the predictions will compel readers into action and to "position themselves to take advantage of coming changes, not to be damaged by them."