Australia leads Asia in SOA, Springboard says

Australia is leading the charge to service-oriented architecture in the Asian region a research firm says.

The Asia region’s market for SOA is estimated to be worth US$810 million, according to Springboard Research, but it’s growing fast and a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 40 per cent will lift its value to US$2.2 billion by 2010.

Springboard’s research further showed that Australia was the largest SOA market in the region at US$205 million. “SOA continues to gain traction in the market as more companies are either implementing SOA or are planning to do so,” said Balaka Baruah Aggarwal, senior analyst of emerging software for Springboard. “Awareness has increased substantially in the last year, and we are now seeing that translate into healthier adoption levels across Asia,” Aggarwal added.

The primary SOA drivers in Asia are improved service delivery in increasingly competitive markets and improved integration at both the data and application levels. The leading service delivery improvements enabled by SOA cited by respondents included reducing the time and cost of delivering services, making services sharable across the enterprise, and more flexible and reusable services. Although equally important, integration appears to be emerging as an enabler supporting the improved service delivery objective.

Mergers and acquisitions (M&As) are also strong drivers for SOA deployment, with 49 per cent of the surveyed companies that had experienced M&A deploying SOA to integrate the IT systems of the merged companies. Governance is also becoming more important with 85 per cent of survey respondents instituting governance in SOA deployments and 40 per cent having a structure integrated from the beginning of implementation.

“While SOA continues to do well in the region, users still have some challenges. The main challenge with SOA deployment as named by survey respondents is managing performance and scalability, and 21 percent mentioned this difficulty as their number one area of concern,” said Aggarwal.

“Additionally, SOA is still largely a technology initiative led by IT managers, as indicated by 68 percent of our surveyed respondents; as such, SOA has mainly been a technology-driven investment instead of an investment focused on addressing clear-cut business goals,” Aggarwal added. “This presents an opportunity for vendors.”

In Springboard’s analysis, IBM remained the leading SOA vendor in the region, followed other strong SOA players such as Microsoft, BEA, Hewlett-Packard, SAP, Tibco, and Oracle.

From its end-user survey, Springboard found that respondents named “proven products and solutions” as the most important reason for choosing an SOA vendor, followed by “clearly defined roadmap for deployment” and “vendor reputation”.

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