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Christensen: Analytics Isn't About the Customer
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Innovation to create
  • 10/30/2014 1:05:49 PM
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Sane IT it's a great example of how the need drove innovation to another level that a consumer or business person couldn't have imagined. True innovation is a little magic because it creates something we literally would not have dreamed of. I think if we took off the restrictions in our thinking we would all have a great chance at seeing our innovative selves and things we could create.

Re: Apple
  • 10/30/2014 8:54:48 AM
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@Jamescon, that's an apt assessment.  The Palm Pilot ruled the roost at that time and while it might have been slightly clunky to sync it wasn't any worse than say a laptop or remote desktop.  I managed  Shiva LanRover dial up solution at the time and had hundreds of corporate users who would plug their Palm Pilot into a telephone line dial up the corporate number and sync their contacts and mail.  This was actually quicker than booting a laptop and dialing into the corporate VPN so people were very happy with them and no one wanted to give them up.  The iPod is a good example of consumer focused products bleeding into the corporate environment. Eventually the iPod led to the iPhone and we all know where that has lead.

Re: Apple
  • 10/29/2014 1:21:23 PM
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Thinking back to when the Newton came out, the market was ripe for something that really was innovative. There were dozens of PDAs on the market. Many were flawed in areas such as ease of synching and contact/calendar download/input. That left most people in the "non-consumption" group, not using any PDA. When Apple finally did come out with something innovative -- marrying the PDA with an MP3 player in the iPod -- it took off, not only with the PDA fans but in a much broader market. 

Re: Apple
  • 10/29/2014 7:16:35 AM
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@James and KT, this is what Clayton Christensen is talking about.  Sure every person in a board room would enjoy IR beaming their business cards around IF they were tech savvy and IF they owned a Newton.  The problem is that businesses like to look at the ifs and ignore the reality of the situation.   This is the difference between a market study and really knowing your market.  We see a lot of future tech fixing problems that no one sees as a problem nor do they care to fix it.  Those that offer a way to augment your current habits are the ones that tend to gain traction.

The questions not the answers give us innovation
  • 10/28/2014 12:13:27 PM
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I do agree with Clayton, what some data enthusiasts fail to understand is that consumer data will only point to some needs. It will not uncover the truly innovative products and solutions because many consumers could not actually imagine them. Ten years ago I don't think a consumer would have asked for streaming media because they could not articulate the need, they might have indicated a need for more flexible media options. It took an innovator to imagine the reality of what we all use today and it will take another innovator to bring us the next generation.

Re: Apple
  • 10/28/2014 10:35:47 AM
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@KT. I went to Apple shortly after the Newton was introduced. Their big selling point was that you could use the IR "beaming" to send someone across the table your business card. It fell short of addressing a customer need.

Re: Apple
  • 10/26/2014 11:15:11 AM
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I mostly agree, but keep in mind that their first attempt flopped (Apple Newton), in part because they did not understand the customer or the customer's environment.

Re: Apple
  • 10/24/2014 2:30:47 PM
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I wouldn't say that the smaller bottles was as big a game changer as the capsules. Having detergent and softener in the appropriate dosage all in one little pellet or packet makes that journey a breeze.

Re: Apple
  • 10/24/2014 10:15:51 AM
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That detergent example is perfect. I wonder if someone could come up with the next great invention by simply sitting on a park bench and watching people go by and wondering why they do what they do. I suspect that the wind-tolerant umbrellas that are designed to pop back into shape might have come from similar observations.

Re: Apple
  • 10/24/2014 1:02:31 AM

This sounds like understanding that consumer consumers are not consuming a product, but rather consuming the benefit of the product.  Concentrated laundry detergent came about not because it cleans better, but because one marketer was watching women in third countries lugging big bottles of detergent up 3 to 6 flights of stairs along with their laundry. Having a smaller bottle was a game changer.  

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