Friday, January 27, 2006

Will Platforms Multiply?

Recently I've been noodling around with an idea not even half-formed about the possible future development of technology platforms. It seems to me that convergence could make it possible for the same kinds of services to be delivered over a growing number of competing platforms that are becoming increasingly flexible, powerful and capable of carrying growing numbers of services.

Some of the services needed -- following is a mix of consumer and business services, but both categories could potentially be delivered via the same platform/vehicle/environment:
  • Voice
  • Video
  • Music
  • Entertainment
  • Contacts
  • Relationship management
  • Web
  • Messaging
  • Productivity applications
  • Financial management

Normally when we think about platforms we kind of think about operating systems -- Windows vs. Mac vs. Linux (et al).

But other market entrants are beginning to position themselves as environments that can act as non-OS platforms -- Google, Salesforce and iPod, for example. Is it possible that other vehicles could emerge that could deliver all kinds of services in such as way that the user really no longer needs to think in terms of being a "computer user" or "using Windows"?

Well, I told you this idea was not even half-formed. But at least now it is recorded for further future noodling.

AB -- 1/27/06