Danish Award Winning consumer design company – Bang&Olufsen has gone up and down, has gone through a lot of hard wind and it seems like whenever they are moving into a new disruptive market, timing is just against them. Trying to launch a iPod a-like device, B&O was compelled to remove their device in the game to win the rich consumers and iPod just grew their customer base day-by-day. Next big thing for B&O was a new well designed and high-definition television. Although critics agreed that the picture quality did make sense, it still is not enough to save B&O and make profit grow.
Yet another launch...
It seems like the bad spiral that B&O has catched always makes them lose in the competitive game. Looking outside and into B&O, I believe the company outgrew their market and does not hit a new strategy in the current economic climate. I think it is time for B&O to redefine their brand, and take the innovative, great design to a complete new market – just like they did when they announced a world-wide companionship with car manufacturer Audi; delivering a “B&O for your Audi”. For many years Band & Olufson moved away from business to business selling, but why not compete in these terms?
As companies are going to implement more devices, especially with implementation of unified communications, equipment like television, audio-devices and camera-devices just like Microsoft’s roundtable will enter corporate meeting rooms. The Microsoft surface board could be a very nice spot for B&O to investergate as the future design, Microsoft announced – could be “businesstized” a bit. B&O is recognized for their solid clean brand and fits nicely with the look and feel of unified communications. Tandberg and Polycom owns this spot – but is very focused on the technical buyers, making B&O early entrant with a clean business brand.
Maybe we will see B&O take on the task. I do hope their will find their model and help the stock raise towards normal grounds. It’s a Danish brand I really like and trust. Although I never bought a thing… pity
In a phone interview the other day, the journalist asked me:
Why would Unified Communications change your life?
Without thinking of it and thinking of a smart, catchy and very impressive answer – I mumbled “No”. Was I wrong? I actually does not believe so. Unified Communications will change my work style and make my work more productive and profitable. But it will probably not impact my life – as I always distuingvis between work impact and life impact in terms of quality. Looking at it from the dawn of todays launches in Unified Communications, it will probably make my life more terrible the next 1-3 years.
First of all I will have ½-1 hours more time on my hand everyday, secondly – there is no policies or regulations in terms of how Unified Communications is implemented in the business and how to cope with video-phone-calls, anywhere access and the anoying factor of my presence status now is online, when I but in an Out-Of-Office just to get my inbox to ground zero. Thirdly – not only do I stress to make micro-management Outlook Rules and Policies to arrange everything in folders and search folders (I need to find information FAST, RELIABLE and CORRECTLY; call me a legal junkie, but I like to know my background facts and information in seconds), Unified Communications will also make me shuffle Voice Rules and Policies to serve my possible recipients or senders. At last – my phone will disappear. I just noted the other day that my desk today is very dull;
- A docking station for my IBM Lenovo t400s
- A stand for my Microsoft bluetooth headset
- A picture of my girlfriend (could be digitalized, but why should I miss a lovely face just because Windows fucks up?)
- My Moleskin dictionary of the great people I have met in my live (but also the Black Pages – You probably know if you are in there)
- That it…
No phone. No monitor. No keyboard. Just a white table and very clean. Even the size of the table was brought down to 140 x 80 – just because I now have it all in my pc – Microsoft did it tell the future. IM A PC.
Analysing these facts, does actually not impact my life only my work style. When I know I am a better person, when I know I am getting less ill – when I know I impact my life through Unified Communications. You probably will read it online – of get it as a voice message through Unified Communications 😉
Finally a cross country alliance has been established. For my US and non-EU readers, you may find it very odd that “we”, the europeans is so focused on this subject, but here is a short spoiler.
Europe is based on many different cultures, different regulations and different laws. As business progress to expand their efforts and succes in Europe, many struggle to find the right model and get faster into the markets of EU. EuroCloud is a very interessting alliance with key stakeholders, that could make the group a succes. But before we marvel and pop the bottles, I believe we should look at more pracmatic factors in the cloud arenda in Europe:
- No brand owns more than 10% market shares, and has established itself as the leaders
- Very few cloud providers differentiate themselves by market segments or vertical focus
- 8 of 10 cloud providers is simple hosters that only focus on the technology stack, and does not build niece or brand in terms of a narrow segment
- Very few providers has come from the ISV route (the TRUE SaaS providers)
- 9 out of 10 start with Hosted Exchange…
I will look towards helping the group and the initiative in any shape, way and form. I believe this is a great step – but a step we cannot flush into succes.