The number of Internet users is doubling every year, and will soon total more than 100 million people. This group will constitute an enormous and attractive market segment, one with exceptional buying power and demonstrated acceptance of new products and new technologies. However, many people use this new medium primarily for social dialog, which gives the Internet a dual role and a unique character that is unlike any medium or marketplace that has existed before. As it matures, therefore, the Internet poses unique challenges to old ways of ding business even as it promises to have enduring impact on the way that business is conducted worldwide.
This report surveys the Internet phenomenon as an important topic for corporate strategy, and offers valuable insights into:
• Its growth
• Its technical foundations
• The new market segments it creates
• Its promising opportunities, and
• Its development over the long term.
“An excellent wake-up call to any company that doesn’t appreciate or hasn’t planned for the impact of the internet on electronic commerce and business communication.” Ron Maheu Chairperson, National High Tech Group Coopers & Lybrand
“An excellent and comprehensive treatment of this very dynamic and evolving component of one of our new market opportunities. I have recommended it to key executives at Pacific Bell and SBC.” Armando R. Marquez Former Director, Strategic Workforce Planning Southwestern Bell
“An impressive analysis. A work of substance and balance.” Benjamin Compaine Senior Research Professor Pennsylvania State University
“A visionary document.” Thomas McGann Former NYNEX Executive
“Way out ahead of a lot of the thinking on the Net.” Benjamin Fuller Daimler-Benz Society and Technology Laboratory
“We like The Knowledge Channel. It has been command reading for a number of our people.” Peter Osgood Osgood O’Donnell & Walsh
“A fundamental treatment of the present and future impact of information technology dynamics on established markets, and the need for business executives to pursue and embrace IT thinking into their strategic planning. Your clear understanding and treatment of the movement toward differentiation markets and your long-term view of how the Internet will foster the shift of power to customers is brilliant.” Paul De Baldo President Corporate Strategic Partners