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One Ring to Unite Them All: Convergence, the Smartphone, and the Cloud

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  • Bryan Pon

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  • Timo Seppälä

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  • Martin Kenney

    ()

Abstract

This paper examines how recent trends in the smartphone industry may be expanding previous conceptions of the industry and its boundaries. The increasing importance of Internet and cloud-based services—which in many ways lie outside the control of the physical device, operating system, and even the cellular network—seems to be changing the roles and strategies of key firms in the ecosystem. Using industry architecture and platform theory, we examine how the key firms seem to be reacting to these new changes. Our analysis indicates that the platform “bottleneck,” or key control point, is moving away from the device and into the cloud, where a new meta-platform based on the Internet may be emerging. Copyright The Author(s) 2015

Suggested Citation

  • Bryan Pon & Timo Seppälä & Martin Kenney, 2015. "One Ring to Unite Them All: Convergence, the Smartphone, and the Cloud," Journal of Industry, Competition and Trade, Springer, vol. 15(1), pages 21-33, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:jincot:v:15:y:2015:i:1:p:21-33
    DOI: 10.1007/s10842-014-0189-x
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. David J. TEECE, 2008. "Profiting from technological innovation: Implications for integration, collaboration, licensing and public policy," World Scientific Book Chapters,in: The Transfer And Licensing Of Know-How And Intellectual Property Understanding the Multinational Enterprise in the Modern World, chapter 5, pages 67-87 World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    2. Jean-Charles Rochet & Jean Tirole, 2014. "Platform Competition in Two-Sided Markets," CPI Journal, Competition Policy International, vol. 10.
    3. West, Joel, 2003. "How open is open enough?: Melding proprietary and open source platform strategies," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(7), pages 1259-1285, July.
    4. Jacobides, Michael G. & Knudsen, Thorbjorn & Augier, Mie, 2006. "Benefiting from innovation: Value creation, value appropriation and the role of industry architectures," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(8), pages 1200-1221, October.
    5. Kevin Boudreau, 2010. "Open Platform Strategies and Innovation: Granting Access vs. Devolving Control," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 56(10), pages 1849-1872, October.
    6. Farrell, Joseph & Saloner, Garth, 1992. "Converters, Compatibility, and the Control of Interfaces," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 40(1), pages 9-35, March.
    7. Carliss Y. Baldwin & Kim B. Clark, 2000. "Design Rules, Volume 1: The Power of Modularity," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262024667, January.
    8. Martin Kenney & Bryan Pon, 2011. "Structuring the Smartphone Industry: Is the Mobile Internet OS Platform the Key?," Journal of Industry, Competition and Trade, Springer, vol. 11(3), pages 239-261, September.
    9. Benjamin Klein, 2001. "The Microsoft Case: What Can a Dominant Firm Do to Defend Its Market Position?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(2), pages 45-62, Spring.
    10. Katz, Michael L & Shapiro, Carl, 1985. "Network Externalities, Competition, and Compatibility," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(3), pages 424-440, June.
    11. Kenney, Martin & Pon, Bryan, 2011. "Structuring the Smartphone Industry. Is the Mobile Internet OS Platform the Key?," Discussion Papers 1238, The Research Institute of the Finnish Economy.
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    1. repec:gam:jsusta:v:9:y:2017:i:12:p:2247-:d:122095 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Smartphone; Platform; Bottleneck; Apple iOS; Android; L14; L15; L86; L96;

    JEL classification:

    • L14 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Transactional Relationships; Contracts and Reputation
    • L15 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Information and Product Quality
    • L86 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Information and Internet Services; Computer Software
    • L96 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Transportation and Utilities - - - Telecommunications

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