ifacethoughts

Being Only Better Is Not Enough

Though we see users yearning for better products every other day, being only better is not enough for a product to be popular. Being better brings in change, and usually the resistance to the change beats down the enthusiasm for betterment.

Then there is also the first-mover advantage, by virtue of which your competitors, though not as good as you, get a bigger market share and user community that is already active and familiar with the product. Betterment, by itself, is not an effective weapon to fight this.

Another perspective is that by virtue of being better, its benefits can be shown only as a comparison against the worst counterparts. A product can make a break-through if it has a definite USP of its own that offers something radically different and new to its users.

So, when a friend called me to ask my opinion on his new CMS, I advised him to rethink his approach. Normally, I do encourage everyone to write their software, especially if they want to learn. But it is a completely different ball game if they want to go commercial with it and make it popular. In fact, I believe that open sourcing a product is the best way to popularize a better product today, and that is something he was not interested in.

The best piece of conversation that talks about this is between Steve Jobs and Bill Gates in Pirates of the Silicon Valley:

Steve Jobs: We’re better than you are! We have better stuff.
Bill Gates: You don’t get it, Steve. That doesn’t matter!

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Abhijit Nadgouda
iface Consulting
India
+91 9819820312
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This is the weblog of Abhijit Nadgouda where he writes down his thoughts on software development and related topics. You are invited to subscribe to the feed to stay updated or check out more subscription options. Or you can choose to browse by one of the topics.