A recent New York Times article on tech giants took me back to high school. In high school there is that coveted group of “cool kids,” they do things their way, and most importantly they protect their territory. Well Silicon Valley has been that group for a long time, made up of the Apples, Googles and Facebooks of the world it dominates the conversation.
So when hot new startups encroach on the “cool kid’s” territory something must be done, in the world of Silicon Valley that means acquisition of the new kid. While it may not seem like a defensive move bringing the new kid into the group, it is just that … preventing any new kid from rising to fame and heaven forbid becoming cooler than them.
You might be wondering “Why is that such a bad thing?” Good question. Diversity is a good thing, when all the smaller players get eaten up by the larger ones we eliminate the competition. You no longer have choices. For instance, as the NYT article points out there used to be a number of map providers. Google bought Waze, Nokia’s Here Maps was sold and now you have a choice once again between Apple and Google. While I love Google Maps, don’t get me wrong, it shows that there are a few major players controlling multiple markets. To put it bluntly, there is a long standing game of monopoly being played within the confines of Silicon Valley.