Friday, May 16, 2008

Open source industry worth £30bn

One open source manager has claimed the industry is worth £30 billion, despite the software being given away for free.

John Powel, the chief executive officer of Alfresco, an open source content management firm, has said it is "now the world's largest industry".

When asked how to value an industry which gives the software away for free Mr Powel said: "You measure it in the savings people are making in licence fees".

"Licence fees don't add any value to the product and are purely a transfer of wealth from consumers to software vendors."

He added that the open source industry has created the "most profound" change in the IT sector since it began.

The licensing form has allowed software to be distributed in a way which has not been allowed before and is powered by the people, Mr Powel added.

Recently the research firm Gartner predicted that most software-as-a-service providers will incorporate open source technology in two years' time.

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