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Digital initiatives driving high growth for AIM software

Application integration and middleware software continues to be a area of big growth, outstripping the growth seen in the overall infrastructure software market, as digital business drives demand for new approaches.

Gartner says worldwide revenue for the application and infrastructure middleware (AIM) software market will exceed US$27.3 billion this year – up 7% year on year. That growth will continue out to 2020 when Gartner forecasts the market will be worth some $33.6 billion.

The AIM software market is only a small part of the overall infrastructure software market – which Gartner forecasts will hit $187.7 billion this year and $220.5 billion come 2020.

Gartner says emerging AIM segments including mobile app development platforms, in-memory data grids and platform as a service, while smaller in size, are showing double-digit growth rates as they grow in line with the growth of digital businesss and market demand for increased agility and scalability.

The mature segment, which includes applications servers and business process management, while larger in size are seeing a high proportion of revenue from maintenance fees, with growth typically single digit.

Fabrizio Biscotti, Gartner research vice president, says established approaches to application infrastructure are ‘too rigid, closed and cumbersome’ to support many digital busienss requirements.

“Growth in mobile, big data, analytics, in-memory computing, cloud and internet of things initiatives is associated with digital business and requires application and integration professionals to invest in new AIM technologies,” Biscotti says.

“This in turn drives fresh integration approaches with new AIM technologies at their core, such as application programmable interface management and integration platform as a service.”

The analyst firm says three main requirements are central to that shift, with digital organisations needing an open, flexible and lightweight model enabling simpler and faster configuration as well as deployment of both cloud and on-premises resources.

They also require platforms that support diverse combinations of resources, applications, data, processes and things from within and outside an organisation.

The third requirement, according to Gartner, is the need for self-service middleware that can increase and decrease in scale rapidly.

“Cloud application infrastructure offerings are still maturing, yet already meet market demands for greater agility, scalability, productivity and efficiency better than their on-premises alternatives,” Biscotti says.

“The older technology, however, often remains more suitable for the most demanding scenarios.”

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