I’ve been talking about the importance of the ecosystem for many years and I feel like 2014 will be critical from that perspective.
Why the ecosystem?
My main argument here is that while there are hundreds of emerging tech startups, they all face a major challenge; how to thrive in the existing ecosystems. Companies like Dropbox that I personally use and love are facing tough competition from the likes of Apple’s (AAPL) iCloud, Amazon’s (AMZN) Cloud services, Microsoft’s (MSFT) Skydrive, and Google (GOOG) Drive.
When I look at news and see Apple hiring physiologists and sleep experts, Google building glasses and auto-driving cars, and buying a thermostat company, and Amazon buying a gaming studio, I think it becomes very clear that these companies feel like they can now start to leverage their existing ecosystems.
The whole idea, of course, is that if you’re able to get users within your ecosystem, you will be in a great position to sell other services & hardware and ensure relevance. While some players (Apple) try to make a lot of money upfront by selling devices at big margins, others, such as Amazon, are willing to sell access to their ecosystem (through Prime or Kindle devices for example) for no profit.
Via Seeking Alpha.