Industry research firm Gartner has revealed the 100 biggest tech companies in the world, as measured by their 2016 revenue from information technology and components.
While hardware players like Apple and Samsung still top the current rankings, Gartner vice president John-David Lovelock said the “digital giants” – such as Google, Alibaba, Amazon and Facebook — are on the rise and are set to take over the world.
“Digital giants effectively become gatekeepers for any business that delivers digital content and services to consumers,” he said.
Gartner is predicting that, by 2021, 20% of activity that any individual engages in will go through one of the top seven digital giants.
“Any company that wants to engage consumers in, or through, their digital world will have to consider engaging with one or more of these digital giants.”
In the top five, Apple and Samsung retain their positions as first and second, but Google has climbed from #5 in 2015 to #3 in the latest ladder. Microsoft and IBM, which held 3rd and 4th positions respectively in 2015, each fell down a place this time around.
Gartner stated that IBM had gained its size in the early days of IT when “servers, storage and consulting” dominated, but that cloud would now become the basis for business technology spending. Microsoft was also born out of that era but had “managed to pivot to remain relevant”.
While the current digital giants are heavily focused on consumer activity, Gartner analysed that there is a gap in the market for selling digital services for business-to-business activities, citing Amazon’s effort to grow its Amazon Web Services cloud arm.