Open Source Software Grows in Importance to End-User Organizations Providing Rising Services Opportunity for Quality Assurance and Testing, IDC Survey Reveals

FRAMINGHAM, MA – April 21, 2008 – Based on findings from a recent survey, IDC foresees that open source software and related services will continue to expand in importance to end-user organizations. Additionally, almost 60% of the survey respondents said their company's spending on open source increased in 2007, in terms of relative percentage of IT spending. Quality assurance, testing, and certification of open source systems was rated as the fastest-growing services opportunity by respondents, who projected their spending on this service would grow 150% between 2007 and 2008.

"The economic slowdown in the United States may actually boost demand for open source services," said Gard Little, program manager, IDC's Worldwide Services and Emerging Services Opportunities research programs. "If organizations adopt more open source software as part of a strategy to reduce software costs, the demand for related services should increase."

IDC predicts more pure service providers will be driven to forge alliances or partnerships with leading open source technology vendors or development communities to stay top-of-mind with end-user organizations. This is because pure service providers ranked lower than IT product vendors in terms of respondents’ plans to use external service providers, and because pure service providers generally ranked lower on the attribute of open source-related service innovation.

Other key findings from this study include:

* Cost savings remained the number one reason for respondents to adopt open source software.

* The service opportunity around open source remains with medium-sized and larger organizations. Respondents from companies with 1,000-9,999 employees reported the highest percentages in spending for 2007 across all services categories except support.

* Respondents believe the biggest challenge vendors face in delivering open source-related services is integrating open source and proprietary software components.

* Technology vendors generally have a leg up when compared to pure service providers in terms of respondents’ plans to acquire external services, and respondents’ perceptions of who provides the most innovative services related to open source software.

This IDC study, Open Source Services User Survey 2008: Customer Perceptions and Needs (IDC #211446), examines the results of a survey of 518 IT and LOB executives at large, medium-sized, and small businesses about their preferences, experiences, and buying intentions regarding services related to open source. The survey was conducted by IDC in December 2007. Overall, 309 respondents, or roughly 60%, were IT executives, while the remaining 204 were LOB executives.

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IDC is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology, telecommunications, and consumer technology markets. IDC helps IT professionals, business executives, and the investment community make fact-based decisions on technology purchases and business strategy. More than 900 IDC analysts provide global, regional, and local expertise on technology and industry opportunities and trends in over 90 countries worldwide. For more than 43 years, IDC has provided strategic insights to help our clients achieve their key business objectives. IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world's leading technology media, research, and events company. You can learn more about IDC by visiting

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