Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Mobile Technologies Effect on Strategy in Software

The emergence of the Internet dramatically changed the access that individual consumers have to software.  Now, much of the software we used to use on our computers is accessible online i.e. Office Online, YouTube, Spotify, etc.  Companies have also developed products like Software as a Service where we don't even need to install software on our personal computers to use anymore.  However, with the increasing change in mobile technology I think that software strategy will shift from Visionary to Shaping.  The growth of mobile applications will cause the predictability of the software industry to increase as well.

Reeves, Love and Tillmanns define predictability as: How far into the future and how accurately can you confidently forecast demand, corporate performance, competitive dynamics and market expectations.  Mobile applications has opened a new door for entrepreneurs in any industry to drive change leading to a growth of 20,000 apps per month in the iOS store alone1.  I feel with this change in supply and demand it becomes much more difficult to forecast the demand, coporate performance, competitive dynamics and market expectations, thus decreasing the predictability of the industry.  

Although the saturation has decreased the predictability for software, the malleability hasn't changed much in terms of impact.  A mobile application can still make huge changes to the software market, which is why tech giants like Google, Apple and Facebook acquire companies like WhatsApp and Waze.  

Considering how the mobile platform has changed our outlook on software, I find a strategic shift appropriate.  Many software entrepreneurs build their app to enact big changes, and approach it with the mindset of "Go big, or go home."  


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