A 3.6 per cent increase in global software sales was witnessed in 2012, it has been reported.
International Data Corporation (IDC) says the market expanded by 3.6 per cent to a total size of $342 billion (£224.7 billion).
This rate of growth is down on the two previous years, but still represents a positive outcome for the sector amid difficult economic conditions.
Data access, analysis and delivery, collaborative applications and security software were among the areas to witness growth.
Customer relationship management applications, and system and network management software, also continued to expand over the 12-month period.
"The global software market, comprised of a multi-layered collection of technologies and solutions, is growing more slowly in this period of economic uncertainty," said Henry D Morris, senior vice-president for worldwide software, services, and executive advisory research.
"Yet there is strong growth in selective areas. The management and leveraging of information for competitive advantage is driving growth in markets associated with bigdata and analytics," he added.
Similarly, he noted that rapid growth in cloud deployments is fuelling growth in application areas associated with social business and customer experience.
Mr Morris claimed that both these initiatives require a reliable and secure infrastructure, driving investments in security and system/network management.
"The combination of these forces is advancing the growth to what IDC has termed the third platform," he stated.
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Posted by Alex Boardman