Monday, December 26, 2005


Switching Partners in 2005

In Strategy 1.0, partnerships were for the long-haul and called for tight-coupling. The end of a partnership often is seen as a failure.

Look at three of the recent changes in partnerships.

1. Apple-Intel link (the erstwhile tight coupling between Microsoft and Intel that created the Wintel platform is no longer contraining Microsoft or Intel to pursue new avenues)

2. Microsoft-IBM for Xbox (IBM is no longer grudging Microsoft for its launch of Windows and is supplying the chips for the new generation of videogames).

3. Palm Treo with Microsoft Smartphone (remember Palm software? it's now owned by Access--a Japanese company).

There may be more but these are big shifts that show that companies understand the requirements of loose-coupling and reconfiguration of capabilities in Strategy 2.0. Dell appears to be running an experiment to include Firefox browser instead of Microsoft's IE in the UK.

In Strategy 2.0, partnerships are dynamically adapted to suit changing market conditions and calls for loose-coupling. Sticking to old partners may not always be the best course of action.

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