Huge multinational computing cartels will emerge to dominate the tech space by 2020, according to a new report from analyst house Forrester research.
The firm says that some of these cartels will be specialised by industry while others will offer specialised qualities of service or customer type.
Looking at the tech space at the moment it may be easy to pick out the companies Forrester thinks will be included in the Computing Cartels – IBM, Oracle, SAP, Cisco for example – as they are already partly there, offering a range of service that in some cases cross the breadth of a business’ needs.
But interestingly Forrester also picks out companies dominant in the consumer space as morphing into Computing Cartels. The report says that companies such as Amazon, Google and Microsoft will become part of the cartels.
However these big boys will not have it all their own way as smaller companies will form cartels that challenge the "the tech giants because they have no prior technology legacy to hold them back. The wars they wage for your enterprise business will be epic," according to Forrester.
So what does this mean for the tech industry as a whole in 2020? Phil Murphy, the report’s author, says:
"The industry of 2020 is software-fuelled, cartel-enabled analytics against big data. Drawing insight from consumer and other data will become the mainstay of firms such as Amazon, Google, Microsoft, and a host of other social and consumer-oriented companies. Cartel partners will join forces: Big technology vendors will provide processing, analytical capabilities, and global reach, while credit-card processing, logistics, and social firms will provide transaction data, logistical supply, and consumer demand and consumption."
The report also looked at the social workforce and what that may mean for businesses. Customer bases will become less Western-focused as BRIC countries – Brazil, Russia, India and China – continue to grow and reshape the balance of world economic power and political influence, Forrester says.
The social aspect of this is that companies should set aside their conventional thinking in favour of lower-certainty, higher-risk ways of thinking and acting if they want to attract a new generation of customers.