Playing Catch-Up

I was reading an article today about the hurdles Google has in getting tablets to market.  The underlying point was what could Google do to catch Apple in the tablet space.  My question is why would they want to? 

If my company’s whole mission was to catch up with someone else and eventually overtake them that would be a fruitless exercise.   Because while I started to take market share, I would scare the top company forcing them to change and develop new products.  So while I eventually may overtake them in one market they would most likely have developed a new market.

Look at the example of Apple and Microsoft.  Microsoft had clearly won the battle for the desktop.  So instead of Apple constantly looking for new ways to convince us to buy a Mac they developed a new market, the tablet.  Prior to Apple’s iPad the tablet market was primarily comprised of awkward stylus driven devices that weighted a bunch and while a doctor was helping a patient it would pop up with needing to reboot.  Apple shifted the market and overnight changed how we define a tablet.  Now the latest Mac OS is acting more like the tablet only with a keyboard, the market has changed.  Now Microsoft is trying to catch Apple with Windows 8.

So if I was with Google I would say let them have that space focus on what we are better at and then spend my cash on creating the next market.

So it is my opinion that Dell and Google and other should spend less time trying to develop a better tablet and more time on what’s next.  The hot products of today will not be tomorrow.