… and why you should never believe the incumbent market leader when their market is being disrupted.
One subtle way to detect that a mature market is being disrupted is to closely observe the behavior of the market leader. If they “stay the course” you can be reasonably confident that the game changing technology and/or the challenging startup company they are facing is not much more than a yawner with lots of hyperbole.
A good example are the large EDA vendors who over the years have dealt with the predicted disruption of the RTL synthesis market by high-level synthesis tools. They’ve stayed their course, claiming RTL design is and will be the dominate IC design methodology for many years to come while continuing to innovate and improve their RTL tools. Their unwavering behavior indicates, appropriately so, that RTL design is indeed the dominant design flow despite the efforts of many to disrupt the RTL market.
If, however, a market leader starts dramatically changing their messaging and outbound marketing activities, well, it’s safe to assume real disruption is occurring and they are working hard to limit its impact on their business. Said more directly, the market leader is freaking out!
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