I thought it was especially interesting that the day after Amazon unveiled their newest R&D project, a drone-based delivery service, Google came out with a press release about their interest in developing robotics that would complement Google Shopping in a similar way. I don’t know about you, but there are enough cars and helicopters flying around as is, I don’t think we need to be sending out a drone every time someone buys a Justin Bieber CD. But either way you cut it, sorry delivery drivers, it looks like your days are numbered.
In related news, Google also began their cloud-based computing service and their major competitor is… You guessed it! Amazon! Which brings us to the bigger point.
Corporate competition certainly isn’t a new phenomenon, but the technology wars have been getting especially fierce lately. What scares me is that all these different companies are spending multiple billions of dollars just so they can have a place in our pockets or in our living rooms without leveraging proper protections for their consumers. While I appreciate all the cool internet-based services are out there, companies like Google and AT&T are leveraged by government agencies to grant access to personal information that passes through their servers. Edward Snowden blew away the veil of trust we had in both our government and the security of the internet as well.
So what’s at stake here besides Microsoft wanting us to put an all-in-one entertainment system that’s always watching you? People certainly do enjoy using technology for both work and pleasure and with the Internet of Things, it will be ever harder to separate connectivity even with mundane things like washing the dishes. Even with the increased adoption of technology in everyday life, the DIY movement is also growing and spawning more growth and new applications customized to their creators needs. These huge companies are going to need to do a lot more than make the next smartphone or video game console. Consumers want options, not limitations, and opting in for one device or another shouldn’t preclude you from getting better applications from a different environment. Even the government agrees with me on that point or they wouldn’t have legalized jailbreaking devices.
When the patents, products, and development are all taken into account, there won’t be a single winner. This isn’t The Highlander, guys. It’s time for these giants to learn to accept they can’t be the only fish in the pond because it eventually causes the ecosystem to collapse. It’s much better for companies to keep targeting their own market demographics and improve the user experience of their regular customer base rather than try to please everyone.
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