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Innovation and Dominant Design in Mobile Telephony

  • Heli Koski
  • Tobias Kretschmer

We document the evolution of product innovation and features in the mobile telephone handset market. We distinguish between two types of product innovation: vertical and horizontal innovation. Using data on mobile telephone handsets from 1990 to 2003, we study the emergence of a dominant design in vertical and horizontal innovations and find that, while vertical product characteristics converged to some extent, no dominant design emerged. For horizontal product characteristics, some horizontal innovations remained differentiated, whereas others were adopted in all new handset models, thus forming a dominant design in horizontal product features. We explain this pattern using the concept of dominant design and results from the theoretical literature on the incentives for horizontal and vertical differentiation.

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Article provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal Industry and Innovation.

Volume (Year): 14 (2007)
Issue (Month): 3 ()
Pages: 305-324

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Handle: RePEc:taf:indinn:v:14:y:2007:i:3:p:305-324
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  1. Czarnitzki, Dirk & Kraft, Kornelius, 2000. "An empirical test of the asymmetric models on innovative activity: who invests more into R&D - the incumbent or the challenger?," ZEW Discussion Papers 00-10, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
  2. Koski, Heli & Kretschmer, Tobias, 2002. "Entry, Standards and Competition : Firm Strategies and the Diffusion of Mobile Telephony," Discussion Papers 824, The Research Institute of the Finnish Economy.
  3. Lehrer, Mark, 2004. "National lead markets and the design competition for 3G network applications," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 57(12), pages 1397-1401, December.
  4. Shaked, Avner & Sutton, John, 1982. "Relaxing Price Competition through Product Differentiation," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 49(1), pages 3-13, January.
  5. Liikanen, Jukka & Stoneman, Paul & Toivanen, Otto, 2004. "Intergenerational effects in the diffusion of new technology: the case of mobile phones," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 22(8-9), pages 1137-1154, November.
  6. Robert Axelrod & Will Mitchell & Robert E. Thomas & D. Scott Bennett & Erhard Bruderer, 1995. "Coalition Formation in Standard-Setting Alliances," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 41(9), pages 1493-1508, September.
  7. Reinganum, Jennifer R., 1982. "Uncertain Innovation and the Persistence of Monopoly," Working Papers 431, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
  8. Rebecca Henderson, 1993. "Underinvestment and Incompetence as Responses to Radical Innovation: Evidence from the Photolithographic Alignment Equipment Industry," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 24(2), pages 248-270, Summer.
  9. Degryse, Hans, 1996. "On the Interaction between Vertical and Horizontal Product Differentiation: An Application to Banking," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 44(2), pages 169-86, June.
  10. Tobias Kretschmer & Katrin Muehlfeld, 2004. "Co-opetition in Standard-Setting: The Case of the Compact Disc," Working Papers 04-14, NET Institute, revised Oct 2004.
  11. Geroski, Paul, 2003. "The Evolution of New Markets," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199248896.
  12. Rosenkranz, Stephanie, 2003. "Simultaneous choice of process and product innovation when consumers have a preference for product variety," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 50(2), pages 183-201, February.
  13. repec:ner:tilbur:urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-72562 is not listed on IDEAS
  14. Heli Koski & Tobias Kretschmer, 2004. "Competing in Network Industries--A Rejoinder," Journal of Industry, Competition and Trade, Springer, vol. 4(1), pages 67-69, 03.
  15. Neven, D. & Thisse, J-F., 1989. "On Quality And Variety Competition," CORE Discussion Papers 1989020, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  16. Gandal, Neil & Salant, David & Waverman, Leonard, 0. "Standards in wireless telephone networks," Telecommunications Policy, Elsevier, vol. 27(5-6), pages 325-332, June.
  17. Clayton M. Christensen & Fernando F. Suárez & James M. Utterback, 1998. "Strategies for Survival in Fast-Changing Industries," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 44(12-Part-2), pages S207-S220, December.
  18. Degryse, H.A., 1996. "On the interaction between vertical and horizontal product differentiation : An application to banking," Other publications TiSEM 384e9355-ea79-4b3e-90cb-1, School of Economics and Management.
  19. Darren Filson, . "Product and Process Innovations in the Life Cycle of an Industry," Claremont Colleges Working Papers 2000-30, Claremont Colleges.
  20. Heli Koski & Tobias Kretschmer, 2004. "Survey on Competing in Network Industries: Firm Strategies, Market Outcomes, and Policy Implications," Journal of Industry, Competition and Trade, Springer, vol. 4(1), pages 5-31, 03.
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