The Data-Platform train left the station - in 2012.
Our best recognizable examples of Platform success – Apple, Amazon, Cisco, eBay. Each is an example of a strong Platform: each controls the standards, govern the architecture, trade and commerce policy in their ecosystem, and their preference for consumer interaction(s).
Each has successfully shifted from a Product Company pushing features and capabilities; instead to a community of buyers, sellers, and developers pursuing endless ways to consummate the match between demand and solution. Each is multi-billion dollar enterprises.
[These platforms]… have adapted to countless needs and niches that the platform’s original developers could not possibly have contemplated…” Mark Andreessen: Venture Capitalist, Founder of Netscape©, HP and eBay board member”
Their benefits extraordinary - each has collapsed the distribution steps of content to the consumer. Now take ZoomInfo; Discover.org; Orbit and a myriad of data platforms aimed at providing data consumption, processing, and intelligence, insight, and data management. We’ll categorize these companies as Data Platform providers.
Their lure to these Platforms is FAST federalizing the data industry controlled to date by the old big gorillas: InfoUSA, D&B, Pitney Bowes, CreditSafe, and more. Unable to resist the user gravity that draws users to these data platforms the old goliaths will completely be consumed by the cloud – their monopoly on insight; their anchor tenant position as reference data in the enterprise fabric will slowly evaporate. The data itself, rather than applications, is the commodity and the platform the value.
The Platform exposes possibilities among users and their needs for manipulation of data regardless of application or data source. No longer are users constrained by a single monolithic treatment of data by a single data provider.
The challenge here is to make the shift to an user-centered experience. Business analysts want autonomy at their fingertips. They don’t want to be beholden to an enterprise license or have to take a class to learn how to use the tool. Business Intelligence (BI) software vendors are getting this message loud and clear: Give me the data and the tools I want, when I want them, or I’ll find a platform that will. No business wants to be on the losing end of that equation – especially in a roughly $12-billion BI market. That’s a lot of clams.
As that value of the data platform rise allegiance to the data supply will dissipate. D&B won’t be eating clams for long.