NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Worldwide IT spending is forecast at $3.8 trillion in 2012, increasing 3.7% from the previous calendar year, according to the latest outlook by technology researcher Gartner. Total tech spending has grown at a CAGR of 4.6% since 2006 and is estimated to cross increase to 6.8% from 2010 through 2015, according to International Data Corporation (IDC). The hardware sector is likely to lead the growth due to the proliferation of smart phones and tablets.Developed markets in North America and Western Europe account for about 70% of IT spending. At $593 billion, North America accounts for the largest portion of about 37% of Tech spending. Based on average estimates of analysts surveyed by Bloomberg, these IT stocks have upsides ranging from 9% to 53%. The buy recommendation and hold guidance for these stocks is 75% and 22%, respectively. The nine stocks are listed in ascending order of upside potential.