December is obviously the time for research analysts to whip out their crystal balls and predict what is going to happen in the year or years ahead. On Wednesday Web2 and More carried some fascinating insights from Gartner and I have just tripped over some predictions from IDC.

The company boldly states that 2012 will also be the Year of Mobile Ascendency as mobile devices (smartphones and media tablets) surpass PCs in both shipments and spending and mobile apps, with 85 billion downloads, generate more revenue than the mainframe market.

The mobility market will see heated competition in 2012 as Microsoft joins the crucial battle for dominance in the mobile operating system (OS) market and the Kindle Fire challenges the iPad in the media tablet market. Similarly, a host of new mobile devices with “good enough” capabilities (think “smartphone lite”) will challenge the current device leaders on price and functionality in key emerging markets like China, India, Indonesia, and Brazil.

Facebook – Business To Consumer Interface

IDC’s predictions for 2012 are presented in full detail in the report, IDC Predictions 2012: Competing for 2020 which also carries the prediction that Social networking technologies – especially where they are being accelerated by mobile technologies – will be recognized as a mandatory component in every major enterprise IT vendors’ strategy.

IDC expects a number of major IT vendors to make “statement” acquisitions in social business while others continue to expand their community platforms. Facebook will attempt to leverage its consumer dominance into a broader role serving as the business-to-consumer platform of choice.

Mobile Apps And HTML5

Other developments include:

  • Mobile data network spending will exceed fixed data network spending for the first time
  • 80% of new commercial enterprise apps will be deployed on cloud platforms
  • 15% of new mobile apps will be based on HTML5 by year’s end
  • Vendors from emerging markets, such as Huawei and China Telecom, will make an aggressive push into developed markets, including the U.S
  • The number of intelligent, communicating devices on the network will outnumber “traditional computing” devices by almost 2 to 1 within next 24 months, changing the way we think – and interact – with each other and devices on the network