Sunday, December 18, 2016

Market Disruption

Robots have replaced a large number of factory workers in many industries. Robotics have largely replaced people in most distribution centers. Digital photography made film-based photography obsolete. Smartphones replaced lower end cameras. Digitally delivered music is replacing CDs. Uber and Lyft will hugely disrupt taxicab service. Self-driving cars will eventually impact the trucking industry. Airbnb has brought new competition to hotels and motels. Medical diagnostic systems based on AI will radically change the role of Internists. The Internet has changed the way news is created and delivered. Drones may become a major method of package delivery. We now have smart homes that can be monitored and managed remotely. CreateSpace allows for on demand printing of books sold on Amazon.com. 



Everywhere you look, there is disruption and there is no industry or job that is safe including knowledge worker jobs and other professional jobs. To be able to anticipate these disruptions and even capitalize on them, you must first understand their sources. Here are some of the sources of disruption:

  • The Internet
  • Robotics
  • 3D printing
  • 3D printed body parts
  • Digitization
  • Artificial intelligence
  • Voice recognition
  • Augmented reality and vision
  • Virtual reality
  • Aerial photography
  • Remote sensing
  • Wearable and ingestible sensors
  • Smartphones
  • Network effects
  • Nanotechnology
  • Big data analytics
  • Photonics
  • Advanced battery technologies
  • Composite materials
  • Exotic meta-materials
  • Self-driving (or autonomous) vehicles
  • Distributed embedded experiences
  • Gene editing
  • Organ repair and regeneration
  • Smart infrastructure
  • Distributed ledgers and blockchains
  • Smart cities
  • Seemless intermodal transportation
  • Deep learning
  • Providers become platforms
Underlying all of this is Moore's Law. In the 1960s, Gordon Moore predicted the continuous improvement in price, performance, size and power utilization of computing power.  

The business owner or marketer who is not aware of these sources of disruption is likely to be left behind by them. The person who is aware of them and is entrepreneurial and opportunistic may just create the next eBay, Uber or airbnb. 

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