The results of a survey conducted earlier this year by Cutter Consortium shows that companies are adopting Web services technology at a rapid pace.

Of the 240 respondents, 30 per cent are developing production applications, 23 per cent are prototyping, 16 per cent are gathering information, 15 per cent are evaluating, and 13 per cent are already running business-critical applications.

Other survey highlights include the following:

• Independent platforms and flexibility were the most popular reasons for using Web services.

• Security, complexity and immature standards, and a lack of shared vocabularies were considered the three greatest obstacles.

• Compatibility problems with other companies or internal groups have been low, with 47 per cent of respondents reporting no problems and 41 per cent reporting only slight difficulty; 12 per cent have had serious difficulty.

• Four of the most popular servers used to deploy Web services were Microsoft Corp.’s .Net (39 per cent), IBM Corp.’s WebSphere (28 per cent), BEA Systems Inc.’s WebLogic (24 per cent) and Sun Microsystems Inc.’s Open Net Environment (20 per cent).