Time And Tide Wait For No Man

I was reading the Innovators Dilemma, a book that chronicles how past leaders in the technology space fell by the wayside, sometimes for no discernible or apparent reason.. the Toshiba’s , the Kodak’s, the Matsushita’s, the Blackberry’s, etc.

Clearly, technology is capable of wiping your business out, overnight… despite having foresight, being proactive, it can, and does still happen.

Android and iOS came from nowhere to kill Symban, Facebook put MySpace into oblivion, and the advent of digital cameras put paid to Kodak. The technology world is littered with giants of yesteryears who got killed by dint of the inexorable and indefatigable march of technology.

Electric Vehicles (EV) would eventually kill the conventional internal combustion engine, the Swiss mechanical watchmakers better wake up and start taking smartwatches very seriously, and any vehicle manufacturer that doesn’t take serious the advent of self driving / autonomous vehicle technology would bite its fingers in anguish, and be left in the humbling dust of yesteryears, eventually.Macromedia Flash got “one upped” by HTML5

It’s a matter of time, the old fading away, unless it keeps rejuvenating.

Time was when cybercafe business was the rave in Nigeria. That business is practically dead. The advent of tablets, phablets/smartphones, and affordable internet put paid to that!.

Perhaps you sell bulk SMS? How is business compared to a few years ago? instant Messaging (lM) like WhatsApp and Telegram eventually killed that business. Perhaps the next businesses to be decimated are voice telephony ones. VoIP calls continue to deal a deadly blow to conventional voice call revenues. Video calls look like the next ubiquitous frontier with the Google Allo’s of this world and Microsoft Skype’s of this world

4G/LTE services are spring up everywhere in Nigeria. If they eventually become price competitive enough, I see cable television and satellite television business fizzling out. The irokoTV of this world could be a wakeup call of what is and would become increasingly possible with increasingly fast and affordable internet service.

obsolete change

photo courtesy – linkedin.com

I was minding my business when I got slapped with the news of the OperaVPN app debuting in the Android platform (You can download the 42MB Android app from the Google Play Store, free).

This was already made available on the iOS platform a few months back. The service from Opera Corporation is free and unlimited. There are companies who make money selling VPN services. Now, the OperaVPN service is invading their turf, taking away revenue. Some recent time past, this same Opera integrated ad blocking into their desktop and mobile browsers. The same Opera has the OperaMAX service that compresses data (systemwide) on your smartphone, making you use far less data, decimating the revenue from services that sell data for a living

Supposing your business is predicated on people clicking on advertisements, online (AdSense & Co) Then, AdBlock makes it its business to block ads online, and your income plummets.

If you are in the technology business, the next wave that could kill you may not be your current competitor. Stop looking over your shoulders. That killer punch can be avoided by being permanently on your technological toes, by constantly innovating, listening to your current customers, and the young kids on the block. The latter have a way of catching a whiff of an imminent shift in ltechnology, long before it happens. Arrogance could be fatal.

Look at the future with metaphorical bionic / telescopic eyes of the “child”, And stay several steps ahead of obsolescence.


  1. September 30, 2016 at 10:08 pm

    This is really a wake up call for those of us in any form of business not just tech related ones. Though the speed at which new ideas become obsolete is very much felt in tech industries, the principle applies to all forms of businesses. Being on ones toes and sniffing the “wind” knowing where it blows and rolling with changes or rather dictating the changes is the way to go in this fast paced world.

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