SYSM6332- summer 2015
Discussion Case 1
* Adobe Systems was founded in 1982 by John Warnock and Charles Geschke. Initially the company was operating only in the graphics and publishing market. First they introduced PostScript as a desktop publishing application, followed by Illustrator, Photoshop and InDesign, all of which turned out to be exceptionally successful. The next step was introducing Acrobat and the PDF document format, which also quickly became an industry standard.
* In the subsequent years Adobe added to its product mix successful products like PageMaker, After Effects and GoLive by acquisition. Despite all ...view middle of the document...
* Adobe wanted to expoit their position in the eDocument business to become a dominant player in the eBooks market. They faced powerful competitors such as Microsoft and Gemstar. Both competitors poses also a strog position either in the Software or Hardware developemt business.
Question 1: How did Adobe establish Postscript as a standard?
Postscript was Adobe’s first product launched in mid 1980’s and its basic function was to provide an interface between a computer program and an output device, such as a printer.
Adobe was able to establish Postscript as a standard because:
* Already very early Adobe as a first mover on the market understood the need for a standard format for publishers and graphic designers. They found a market gap and addressed the demand for a universal computer/printer interface. Implementation of an open standard was the key tactic. Page description language was open source, free to use and established itself quickly due to Adobe’s technical support, well-documented product and third party developers.
* Joint product development: For Postscript interpreter, important component of Postscript product, Adobe sought out to work with customers in order to help with the design of customized Postscript interpreters using joint product development teams. It licensed the technology to printer and image-setter manufacturers on royalty basis, thus collecting a fee on each printer sold. With increase of such licenses from 1 in 1985 to 60 in 1994, Postscript became a de facto standard.
* Adobe granted free access to the controller chip design in order to push diffusion of their new standard and engaged in joint product development with end users. The success of PostScript was also its universality.
* Adobe had the tactics right by licensing the post script interpreter technology to printer manufacturers on a royalty basis. With their PostScript technology Adobe successfully created first mover advantages and was able to build strategic Alliances with important companies suchs as with Apple, Aldus and Linotype. This helped Adobe to provide professional quality document writing to desktop users and thereby tap a blue ocean market. This also ensured that it gained market share quickly and sustain it by maintaining them.
Question 2: Which firm is in a better position to control eBook standards, Adobe or Microsoft?
The eBook market was publicly advocating single open eBook standards; however, it seemed that Adobe had a slightly better position to control these standards because:
* OEB Standards: The OEB standards lacked the ability to print the eBooks, which implicitly meant that documents written for Microsoft Reader could not be printed. Since Adobe did not adhere to the OEB standards, its PDF had the feature to print documents, a function they believed was still important.
* Compatibility: The OEB standards only advised specifications over the content and not the users of the...