Is this really a tech vendor secrecy problem?

I know, I know…I’ve been remiss on posting.  All I have are very lame excuses that I won’t give.

Just saw this article “Global CIO: Tech Vendors’ Secrecy Hinders Innovation” and I’m still not sure what to make of it.  Perhaps we can blame the copy editor for the headline, because the author raises some issues that I don’t think have much to do with secrecy (at least not in the case of SAP):

  1. Mobile devices:  I don’t get the secrecy angle here at all.  The author assumes that enterprise SW vendors have “somehow managed to miss out so far on a pretty big opportunity here — I mean, it’s not as if the smartphone market just sneaked up on everyone.”   But this argument begs the question of the “big opportunity”: for whom is it a big opportunity? Is there really more-than-incremental revenue for the SW vendor? How many solutions really need mobile, or at least more mobile than having e-mail/workflow alerts pushed and granting application access via mobile device’s web browsers?
  2. SAP Business ByDesign: Here “secrecy” sounds more plausible, but I believe the answer is simple.  We’ve been pretty clear that we need to get SAP Business ByDesign to a certain cost/user point before we can scale up fully.  The year-end scramble due to the financial crisis can’t have helped matters.  Perhaps that solution’s roadmap could be clearer, but my take is that our approach has less to do with secrecy and more to do with an abundance of caution about issues we’ve acknowledged. 
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