IDC eWorld 2001 Challenges Accuracy of Current Market Assumptions

FRAMINGHAM, MA – APRIL 24, 2001 – IDC, the leading global market intelligence and advisory firm, releases the final results of its eWorld 2001 Survey today. "The accuracy of current Internet market assumptions is challenged by the eWorld 2001 Survey results. For example, the dot-com stock crash has made people lose sight of the fundamental reasons companies invest in ebusiness strategies. Contrary to recent reports, the NASDAQ’s woes in no way mean the end of ebusiness," said John Gantz, IDC’s Chief Research Officer.


Based on eWorld 2001 findings, IDC forecasts over $5 trillion will be invested over the next four years in developing more efficient modes of conducting ebusiness worldwide. IDC’s investigation reveals the various market trends, concerns, and factors that will dictate this spending. The eWorld 2001 Survey findings contradict many popular market assumptions, offering insight and knowledge that will better prepare ebusinesses on both domestic and international fronts.


The Dot-Com Crash Is Irrelevant

Companies around the world will spend more on Web site infrastructure this year alone than they did in five years preparing for Y2K. Although Internet stocks have crashed, dragging most of high tech with them, this decline is simply part of a cyclical market trend. In reality, brick-and-mortar companies worldwide are still investing in ebusiness with fervor. Over the next four years, the number of Web sites will double, ecommerce will increase by a factor of 10, and technology spending on Web applications will escalate to four times what it was the previous four years.

B-to-C Is Not Dead

By 2005, over $700 billion will be spent by consumers purchasing goods and services online in the United Sates alone. Of the 40% of companies that can take orders for products and services through their Web sites, 81% handle consumer transactions (most also handle business to business). Despite its much-maligned status in the Internet stocks pantheon, business-to-consumer Internet commerce is alive and well.

When It Comes to Mobile Access, the United States Is Stuck in the Mud

By 2004, Europe will have twice as many mobile Internet users as the United States. While most of the world is swiftly migrating to mobile use of the Internet, the United States, which is already behind both Europe and Japan in mobile phone penetration and mobile Internet access, will fall behind even further.

eBusiness Expectations Are Not Prepared for Demand

While 2 in 5 Web sites can take orders, less than 1 in 10 can handle payments over the Web. Many companies have high expectations for ebusiness, yet most aren’t equipped to reach their goals. Companies expect to double revenues from online sources this year, but less than 1 in 5 commerce sites are tied into the traditional order processing system; despite the rapid growth of mobile users they will have to support, less than 1 in 10 has made any accommodation in their Web site.

English Will Still Rule the Net

By 2005, over 30% of all Internet users will still speak English as a native language. It’s a widely held assumption that in a few years English will no longer be the dominant language on the Internet, yet by 2005, Chinese will come second, with less than 1 in 7 Internet users speaking it as a native tongue. Japanese will be a close third.

Personality Clashes

Less than 1 in 5 IT professionals characterizes himself or herself as a risk-taker; while 2 out of 3 Internet executives considers himself or herself a risk-taker. Beyond the functional practicalities of Web hardware and software development and implementation, there is another potential obstruction to ebusiness goals: company politics. The ebusiness executives who must drive Internet initiatives need certain personality traits to be successful as agents of change, yet the IT professionals who must integrate and maintain these changes with existing information systems have personalities that are almost polar opposite. Ideological difference and personality conflicts in the workplace may prove just as problematic to achieving company goals as the implementation of necessary technology.

About the Survey

The IDC eWorld 2001 Survey was conducted through 27 countries polling the three major subsections of the ebusiness world: CIO/IT managers, business executives, and consumers. This is IDC’s most comprehensive data analysis of the global market landscape to date. The survey is available for purchase by contacting Amie White at or (508) 935-4653. The IDC eWorld 2001 Survey was sponsored by Compaq Computer Corporation (, Cisco Systems, Inc. (, eTranslate ( (, CIO Magazine (, and Market Probe (

Web Conference

For information and to register for IDC’s Web conference on eWorld 2001, visit

About IDC

IDC is the foremost global market intelligence and advisory firm helping clients gain insight into technology and ebusiness trends to develop sound business strategies. Using a combination of rigorous primary research, in-depth analysis, and client interaction, IDC forecasts worldwide markets and trends to deliver dependable service and client advice. More than 700 analysts in 43 countries provide global research with local content. IDC's customers comprise the world’s leading IT suppliers, IT organizations, ebusiness companies and the financial community. Additional information can be found at

IDC is a division of IDG, the world's leading IT media, research and exposition company.


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Editor’s Note: The executive summary and visual documentation from the IDC eWorld 2001 Survey are available at For further press information contact Erin Lynn Marino at 617-838-5593.


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