Startups have the Edge

Phil Wainewright quotes Ray Lane in an interview about startups and established companies: “Typically, if the challenge is a discontinuous change in the status quo, startups have the advantage. Microsoft didn’t invent browsers; Netscape did. IBM didn’t invent the PC; Apple did, and so on. The RTE [real-time enterprise] is a discontinuity with 100 years of status quo, so I think startups have an advantage … Well established companies … will provide the massive infrastructure the RTE will require – operating systems, databases, application systems, etc – but the new tools and apps will likely come from the startup world.”

Even as the software industry consolidates (or is being forced to), the opportunities continue to exist for startups. It would be interesting to look not at the big companies, but at the SMEs. The way to do it: leverage Linux. Here’s a point made by Dana Blankenhorn: “In the case of enterprise software, Linux represents that radical change. Linux removes the power to alter big systems from vendors, and puts it firmly in the hands of customers. After all, with Linux, customers can make changes on their schedule, by themselves. Before Linux, change could only happen when vendors allowed it to happen, because customers could not see the underlying code. Absent such access customers could only nibble around the edges of major change, fiddling with minor upgrades, or changing procedures.”

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Rajesh Jain

An Entrepreneur based in Mumbai, India.