Today we all have access to amazing technology, but what separates those who thrive from those who struggle?
For sure, if you develop a new form of technology – that’s going to give you an advantage. But if you look closer you’ll see that all new products are, in one way or another made possible with the use of existing technology.
Look at the last 10 years – from phones, cars, social media… All this great new technology has only come about from past technology – innovation is like an onion, with layers of technology added at each stage of development, continuously evolving the product into something similar, but better.
I find the simplicity of those technological additions fascinating. At its release, the iPhone was a game-changer, but the technologies used to create the iPhone were available for years! In fact, the iPhone couldn’t have been successful without a reliable network, which just happened to have been developed by the market leader at the time – Nokia. And soon, Nokia ultimately lost market share to Apple.
Mere twenty years ago the prospect of creating an electric car did not seem feasible, at least not at scale for the consumer market. Is the newest Tesla groundbreaking? Yes. But they are standing on the shoulders of 100 years of automotive and electrical engineering. Hard work of countless innovators and pioneers before them allows Tesla to focus capital into bridging the gap of electrical energy storage, Oh yea and how did this technology become mainstream? That’s right mobile devices.
So, hopefully, you’re getting my point – Innovation is the process of using existing technology to solve problems. Technology by itself does not create innovation. You need the ability to see opportunities, have the know-how to utilise existing technologies and have a clear understanding of what your clients want.
Innovation is, essentially, the constant evolution of technology, driven by people who imagine and then create a better future. JW