Regardless of the global effects of the Coronavirus pandemic, India's information technology industry is expected to report either stagnant or negative growth in 2020. The human catastrophe inflicted on the world by the COVID-19 pandemic is incalculable, and continues to rise. Each human life is precious and requires the treatment required to preserve it. COVID-19 also impacts entire sectors, causing them to gyrate spontaneously in unpredictable ways and having a direct impact on IT and tech spending.
Effect of Lockdown on IT sector:
The major challenges the IT sector currently faces are due to the economic crisis, as many businesses are forced to allow their workers to operate from home (remotely) with the public health issues in their account. Despite of this, many businesses which have foreign suppliers have a huge loss of opportunity. For example, due to the lack of market supply of iPhones, Apple Inc. is expected to have at least 10 per cent decline in its shares. The parts needed to create the iPhones will come from China, and it is facing a big lockdown.
The spread of this deadly virus has prompted the cancelation of many tech conferences, which could have been a perfect collaboration opportunity for other companies to broaden their horizons. Some of the meetings also moved to teleconferences, but that won't have the same impact, and the conference participants won't have the ability to network because they would during the actual conference. There's an annual loss of US$ 1 trillion due to the cancelation of these big tech conferences.
Disguised benefits in this pandemic:
Even after all this, the IT sector is projected to have a massive business boom from US$ 131 trillion in 2020 to US$ 295 in the next five years by 2025 compared with many other industries. High demand for mobile and social media channels such as Google Hangouts, WhatsApp Video Call, Zoom, and Microsoft Teams is the key reason for this rise in the economy for this business. Both of these teleconferencing devices help those in quarantine keep in touch with family members as well as attend conference meetings and operate concurrently. The economy would also grow because, during these crises, people realized the value of the Internet and technology because it allows us to stay safe and interact with the public.
Some smart solutions around the world:
Many countries facing the shutdown have invested in smart city solution including China's cops use drones equipped with thermal sensors to recognize the coronavirus symptoms and get immediate medical assistance. The government has introduced a chat-bot in Australia to keep people up-to-date with the situation and address their questions so that they can minimize the spread of false information and avoid the confusion that could be generated in public. In South Korea, a Mobile app has been introduced by the local government to keep the self-quarantine employees in contact with their co-workers to keep updates on the job cycle and ask questions.
The telecom AHS developed a 5 G powered network in China in January to allow consultations and diagnosis of people affected by the virus by linking the doctors at West China Hospital with 27 other hospitals in the region to treat the people affected by the disease. It not only helps physicians to interact more efficiently and establish a diagnosis, it also helps keep track of emergency patients in need of urgent medical assistance and whether a hospital is unable to provide the patient with immediate assistance to the nearest fitted hospital.
Blooming Opportunities and Threats in the IT industry:
A lot of opportunities opened up in the IT industry due to the coronavirus, such as the increasing need for 5th-generation (5 G) technology. This will help to increase connections and support remote interactions that are primed. Because of the pandemic this has been the highest priority for many organizations. Telehealth is one of the crisis-developing markets. This would help patients get diagnosed, treated and operated with a physician having to be physically present. In the last few months, a number of applications have been developed to help achieve this. There are many patients in self-quarantine requiring regular medical care and medical assistance, and these applications may help them achieve that.
There are a few risks too, such as what will happen to the IT industry after the pandemic is over? Unlike the global economic and financial crisis of 2008, could exporters in this industry fear it won't be able to recover after the downturn. The central banks at the time managed to boost financial stability, but now even the central banks are powerless.
Potential Long-term impact on technology sub-sectors
The launch of new smartphones may be deferred due to supply chain constraints. Mobile phone users on contacts may defer replacing their devices due to lower customer confidence.
While factories in Asia are reopening, companies are experiencing challenges getting production fully running. The short and potential long-term impact could be significant.
In contrast to the parts shortage and unpredictability of supply chains dragging down the industry, the software is a growth catalyst.
Companies with remote-working technologies are already seeing increased demand as businesses increase their remote-working capabilities.
Hardware companies may see major demand coming from enterprises, who are placing large orders for laptops and mobility devices to support employees now working from home.
Security software will see third-order benefits from a growing remote workforce. It spending on security software will increase as organizations race to secure endpoints, particularly cloud-based tools, log management, and VPNs.
Every industry already experiences economic hurt from the COVID-19 pandemic. This is the time for business software vendors to go the extra mile in all sectors for their customers to help them recover to expand again. Reinforcing consumers in their time of need by voluntarily offering remote communication resources, stable endpoint solutions, cloud-based storage, and CRM systems is a collective commitment that every tech company needs to make during this pandemic too.