Don’t buy web software… subscribe to it!

On April 15, 2010 by Jennifer Matt

I live in a bubble, it’s called San Francisco / Silicon Valley / technology geek addicts world. This week I traveled outside the bubble to my hometown of Omaha, NE to celebrate my father’s life. He passed away after 83 years of living large. Robert H. Matt had 14 kids, was a successful entrepreneur, and […]

I live in a bubble, it’s called San Francisco / Silicon Valley / technology geek addicts world. This week I traveled outside the bubble to my hometown of Omaha, NE to celebrate my father’s life. He passed away after 83 years of living large. Robert H. Matt had 14 kids, was a successful entrepreneur, and joined the Peace Corps in his 60’s. I miss him.

Whenever I’m in Omaha, I’m the technology support desk for 13 brothers and sisters and 20+ nieces and nephews. From the very instant I walked off that plane, to the first interaction with nine-year old desktop computers running Internet Explorer 5, I realized I was very far outside my bubble.

What does all this have to do with print, web to print, eCommerce?

Going back to Omaha reminds me that the echo chamber of Silicon Valley does not automatically extend across the country or the globe; and as a good friend of mine used to say, “assume nothing fool.” I was under the assumption that everyone knows that owning software is a liability. Yes, a liability. The arguments have been the same for years – I want to own the web to print solution and have full control over it.

Ownership: Good web software is constantly moving and integrated into other software solutions who are also constantly moving. Owning the software is a liability because each time the software moves it requires coordinated effort by you and your vendor. A liability for both parties (time, effort, errors, expense, labor).

Control: When a software solution is installed as a single instance locally, you do have more control, but its over things that are a liability (e.g. hardware, operating system licenses, patching and upgrades, virus protection, RAM, etc…). If you’re thinking control protects you from a vendor going out of business, this only holds true if you are satisfied with the current version forever and if nothing else ever changes (e.g. internet browsers). Control is an illusion.

The internet ecosystem is evolving REALLY FAST. Any solution participating in this ecosystem is required to move at that rate to continue to function. There are so many unknowns (e.g. the current browser war between Explorer, Chrome, Safari, and FireFox, the fate of Adobe’s Flash technology in an iPad world, the whole idea of local desktop software with the option of Google Apps, etc…). Combine the unknowns with the accelerating pace of evolution, buying a software license in this environment is like investing in a bike when everyone one else is buying a train car for a high-speed rail system.

Subscribe to a solution which has proven it can keep up with the pace of the internet ecosystem. Before you buy the solution, try it out on all the latest internet browsers and/or ask the question, “what is the vendor’s process for staying on top of all the moving parts of the internet ecosystem?”

There is no room for isolated point solutions anymore. Control and ownership of software solutions is a liability in this interconnected world.

 

Comments are closed.

© Copyright 2014 WhatTheyThink. For reprint information, please contact us.