As technologists, we have two choices:
One is to provide the customer a better experience, the freedom to
select what he wants, a differentiation based on service quality
against a backdrop of abundance.
The second is to create artificial scarcities around the things
that are abundant, create new inconveniences for the customer, new
lock-ins, new irritants. Irritants like Region Coding on DVDs. Lock-ins
like we see in digital music.
For the last thirty years, too many of us in IT have focussed on
creating these artificial scarcities, often without even knowing it.
First we paid to bury the data in vendor stacks, then we paid to try
and dig it out. We’ve been doing this for years. And we’re in danger of
doing it again.
Time for a change.
Time to focus on ways of delivering service where the customer
wants, when the customer wants, how the customer wants. Time to focus
on open platforms, open protocols, open software, open ways of doing
That’s what the economics of abundance is really about. Making money because of what you do, and not with what you do. Having customers who stay with you because they want to, not because they have to.
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