The Age of the Platform

How Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google Have Redefined Business

bookHeaderOver the last five to seven years, four companies have ascended to absolutely astounding heights. They are Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google. Yes, these companies excel via their superior use of technology. They have built incredible ecosystems. Their understanding of the importance of data is second to none. They’ve embraced partnerships, external innovation, application programming interfaces (APIs), and software development kits (SDKs).

Beyond all of this, as award-winning author Phil Simon writes, the Gang of Four has embraced an entirely new way of doing business: the platform.

Definitions: Platforms and Planks

A platform is simply a set of integrated planks. The most powerful platforms today have two things in common. First, they are rooted in equally powerful technologies—and their intelligent usage. In other words, they differ from traditional platforms in that they are not predicated on physical assets, land, and natural resources. Second, they benefit tremendously from vibrant ecosystems (read: partners, developers, users, customers, and communities).

While platforms inhere a great deal of potential commercial appeal and applications, they do not exist simply as a means for companies to hawk their wares. At their core, platforms today are primarily about consumer utility and communications. Finally, because consumer tastes change much faster than business’ tastes, platforms today must adapt very quickly—or face obsolescence.

A Different Business Model

In the 1990s, platforms and ecosystems were not nearly as powerful, robust, and vibrant as they are today. And it’s these connections between and among platforms and planks that allow Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google to:

  • Innovate so quickly–and profoundly
  • Rapidly deploy new integrated features
  • Create and dominate new markets

Welcome to the Age of the Platform.

What’s the book about in three minutes?

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The Age of the Platform: Sample

“If you’re a businessperson looking for new ways to boost sluggish sales, invigorate your employees, and grow your company, The Age of the Platform provides a jolt of thought-provoking inspiration and fresh ideas. Even a humble author can learn a thing or two about platform building.”

—BlogCritics

“Essential reading on the state of business today–and where it is going. Ignore this book at your own peril.”

–Adrian C. Ott, award-winning author, The 24-Hour Customer

“As someone who pores over countless business books each year, The Age of the Platform was a joy to read. Frankly, I can’t stand the overly long, formulaic books that have only a couple of new ideas in the first two chapters and then fill the rest of the book with ponderous examples that barely advance the thinking. The Age of the Platform is different. It makes valuable points throughout. A joy to read.”

–Brian Sommer ZDNet blogger and founder of TechVentive

The Age of the Platform is the kind of book to read if you want to better understand the Internet and how your company can fit into it and create a business model to profit from it.”

–Anita Campbell, co-author of Visual Marketing

“Remarkably insightful. A must-read for anyone interested in creating change-tolerant organizations.”

–Robert Charette, President, ITABHI Corp

“Nothing short of a 21st-century business survival guide.”

–Mike Faith, CEO & President, Headsets.com

“Exceptionally researched and written. A landmark book.”

–Jane Applegate, author of 201 Great Ideas for Your Small Business

“Profound. Important. A groundbreaking text.”

–Jay Miletsky, Founder and CEO, MyPod Studios and author of Perspectives on Marketing

Buy the book on Amazon now.

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