US technology titan IBM says the job skills of the future include savvy with smartphones, tablet computers and software hosted in the Internet "cloud" rather than standard desktop computers.
IBM Tech Trends Survey results being released Friday show that a majority of business technology specialists expect that by 2015 more business software will be made for smartphones and tablet computers than for traditional office systems.
And some 91 percent of the 2,000 respondents from 87 countries agreed that within five years it will be more popular for companies to use programs offered online as services than for firms to manage in-house computer networks.
"I think the social implications are going to be huge," IBM vice president of alliances Mark Hanny said while discussing the survey findings with AFP.
"It is important for people to embrace technology; it is a key determent in all kinds of professions."
From medicine to media and beyond, needed job skills will include mastering software applications on the booming array of mobile gadgets linked to the Internet, according to Hanny.
"Mobile devices are putting a lot more power into the actual users' hands," he said. "In a way, we are empowering professionals in all kinds of careers to get and leverage information they need to get their jobs done."
The implications of the study should resonate strongest with people aspiring to careers in making software.
"We are going to see a major change in how software is developed and by whom," Hanny said. "If you were a young kid in college right now you might want to start thinking about knowing how to do software for mobile devices."
IBM said that the company works with an array of universities to integrate technology into curriculums.
Mobile and cloud computing were followed by social media and analytics as technology career opportunities that survey respondents predicted will be hottest next year.
Telecommunications, financial services, healthcare, and energy and utilities were ranked as the top industries for technology careers.
"A lot of companies we work with today are not only taking advantage of mobile but are putting IT (Information Technology) skills in the hands of all kinds of professionals," Hanny said.
Analysts predict mobile applications sales will expand from 6.2 billion dollars this year to nearly 30 billion dollars by 2013, according to figures cited by IBM.
IBM developerWorks provides free tools for developing applications for mobile platforms underpinning iPhones, iPads, Android smartphones and other devices.
New resources were made available at developerWorks to mark the release of the survey results.
The survey of developerWorks eight million registered users was conducted in August and September of this year, according to IBM.
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