SAN FRANCISCO - The middleware market will grow steadily for the foreseeable future, although the torrid growth rates of the last few years have probably ended, according to Gartner/Dataquest research.
The research firm predicts that the middleware market will grow from $3.47 billion in 2000 to $10.7 billion in 2005. However, the composition of the market will change dramatically as the action shifts from ''plumbing'' software, like transaction monitors, to software that links applications together at a high level.
Dataquest predicts that integration broker suites will comprise 53% of the middleware market by 2005, up from 39% today. ''This is a sector whose time has come and will not soon pass away,'' said Joanne Correia, a Dataquest vice president. The research was released here this week at Gartner's Application Integration conference.
Among other findings:
- Sales of integration broker suites have been on a tear, more than doubling to $1.3 billion in 2000. About 20% of the connections using these brokers are between organizations, indicating that business-to-business applications are reaching the deployment stage.
- The middleware market will be somewhat resistant to economic forces because the downturn is forcing IT organizations to look for ways to wring more value out of their existing applications, Dataquest said.
- Message-oriented middleware sales will slow but usage will increase as more messaging services are bundled into integration broker suites.
- The integration broker market remains fragmented, with at least eight vendors owning significant pieces of the market.
- Customer relationship management applications are a major driver of middleware sales. The CRM middleware market is nearly half the size of the enterprise resource planning market, compared to just 15% three years ago, Dataquest said.
- XML is being adopted very quickly and will become a mainstream middleware technology this year.
- The software industry downturn is likely to persist for at least another two quarters.
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