Gartner: CIOs ready to invest more in mobile tech

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A new Gartner study shows business leaders are ready to spend more money on mobile technology--specifically mobile devices and workforce applications. Even so, analysts predict " a modest compound annual growth rate of 1.3 percent for IT spending in the government and education sectors through to the end of 2017" and "75 percent of government CIO budgets flat or increasing in 2013."

The results were released following a survey of over 1,950 CIOs in both private and public sectors. It revealed that alongside increased spending on mobile technology, implementing mobile solutions is among the top 10 priorities for today's CIOs.

Gartner's figures line up with CIO Magazine's research earlier this year which showed that "IT leaders are seeing increased budgets over the next year, with an overall increase of 4.9 percent, and that mobile/wireless, outsourced IT services (including cloud) and hardware investments are on the rise."

On the surface, it appears that an expected increase in spending is based on the clear importance of mobile technology in the workplace. In reality, it might be based on something far less sexy: Mobile tech is expensive and budgets must be raised to meet the challenge.

Analysts with management consulting firm McKinsey & Company break down some of the figures for us. "The costs of the actual devices and connectivity vary but are typically between $600 and $700 annually for an iPad or comparable tablet. Included in this are infrastructure costs that include technical components such as mobile-device management, expanded e-mail capacity, and help-desk support. These costs typically total $150 to $250 annually per device. Application costs will vary greatly, depending on the number and type of applications and the way they are enabled for mobile."

When you consider that those figures are just for initial device deployment and don't include things like specialized application development or virtual desktop integration, it's easy to see how budgets need to be adjusted upward to accommodate the workforce's rapidly-changing mobile environment.

For more:
- see the Gartner release

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