Software King as $25.5 billion NZ ICT industry rings cha-ching

"While sales of ICT goods are generally falling, we are seeing strong growth in software and ICT services."

The information and communication technology (ICT) sector completed sales worth $23.5 billion in 2014, an increase of 3 percent since 2012, according to a Statistics New Zealand report released today.

But although the increase in overall sales was small, there have been changes within the sector.

“Sales by the ICT sector are the equivalent of around 10 percent of GDP,” says Jason Attewell, Business Performance Manager, Statistics New Zealand.

"While sales of ICT goods are generally falling, we are seeing strong growth in software and ICT services."

Findings show that services pushed the increase in total sales, with information technology services leading the way.

Sales in Internet access and Internet telecommunication services were up 50 percent since 2012, to reach $2 billion, this increase offset a similar decrease in more traditional communication services such as fixed landline connections.

“The smartphone revolution is not only about more people buying smartphones, but also about them using these devices to run more of their day-to-day business and life,” Attewell adds.

“Sales are increasing, and the ways in which phones are being used is changing, with more people on data plans and the data plans being larger."

Although the value of total goods sales has decreased over the two years, Attewell says sales of published software and telecommunication equipment, such as cellphones, have increased.

Meanwhile, trade data shows that imports of cellphones have been steadily increasing – from $350 million in 2011 to nearly $600 million in 2014.

Published software (including apps, online software, games, and off-the-shelf software) increased 17 percent – the largest increase for goods. In addition, export sales of published software have nearly doubled since 2012.

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