The New Zealand ICT sector has experienced a moderate rise in sales and a significant change in service offerings, says Statistics New Zealand.
The ICT sector had sales worth $23.5 billion in 2014, an increase of 3% since 2012. Although the increase in overall sales was small, there have been significant changes within the sector, says the public service department.
“Sales by the ICT sector are the equivalent of around 10% of GDP,” Jason Attewell, Statistics New Zealand business performance manager.
"While sales of ICT goods are generally falling, we are seeing strong growth in software and ICT services," he says.
Services pushed the increase in total sales, with information technology services leading the way.
Sales in internet access and internet telecommunication services were up 50% since 2012, to reach $2 billion.
This increase offset a similar decrease in more traditional communication services such as fixed landline connections.
“The smartphone revolution is not only about more people buying smartphones, but also about them using these devices to run more of their day-to-day business and life.
“Sales are increasing, and the ways in which phones are being used is changing, with more people on data plans and the data plans being larger,” Attewell says.
Although the value of total goods sales has decreased over the two years, sales of published software and telecommunication equipment, such as cellphones, have increased, Statistics New Zealand says.
Trade data shows that imports of cellphones have been steadily increasing – from $350 million in 2011 to nearly $600 million in 2014.
Published software (including apps, online software, games, and off-the-shelf software) increased 17% – the largest increase for goods.
In addition, export sales of published software have nearly doubled since 2012.