Data centre hardware spending is set to reach $99 billion (£63 billion) worldwide this year, up from $87.8 billion (£56 billion) last year, as in-house data centres decrease in influence, Gartner has claimed.
Based on its Data Centres, Worldwide, 2010-2015 forecast, Gartner's research director, Jon Hardcastle, said that spending in the data centre space will surpass 2008 levels thanks to an increased investment in storage.
"Worldwide data centre hardware spending will finally reach and surpass 2008 levels," Hardcastle said.
"Storage is the main driver for growth, and although only a quarter of data centre hardware spending is on storage, almost half of the growth in spending will be from the storage market."
The spending will equate to a 12.7% increase from 2010, with Hardcastle saying that in-house data centres are coming under attack as a result.
"First, virtualisation technologies are helping companies to utilise their infrastructure more effectively, inhibiting overall system growth," Hardcastle said.
"Secondly, data centres are getting more efficient, leading to higher system deployment densities and inhibiting demand for floor space.
"Finally, the move to consolidated third-party data centres is reducing the overall number of midsize data centres."
Gartner also predicted that the largest category of data centres, those with more than 500 racks of equipment, will increase its share of spending from 20% in 2010 to 26% in 2015.