technology adoption

When does luxury become a commodity?

Isaac Mostovicz writes that luxury products are at risk of becoming a commodity quicker than ever before ...

A recent article in the Washington Post highlights that when new and exciting high-tech gadgets launch, it isn’t long before the wider market follows and attempts to replicate the sought after product. As industry players join the market, the cost of components goes down and competition intensifies.

As a general rule, increased competition forces companies to improve their offer and quality of product – benefitting the customer. As is identified, the natural evolution of a product means it isn’t long before what is considered luxury becomes a commodity. A process all the more exacerbated by today’s pace of trend and innovation.

For Lambdas who look to differentiate themselves with the luxury they buy, how to stay ahead of the curve is an important consideration. Time must be dedicated to research the ‘next new thing’. By the time a product is popular, it may be considered a commodity; this observation suggests all Lambdas are likely to be ‘early adopters’.

In the early stages of a product’s life cycle, early adopters usually focus on the benefits and new features, leading to weak price elasticity and are happy to pay more money for a product to get it ‘now’.

Ofcom’s fifth International Communications Market report suggests that there are perhaps nations of ‘early adopters’; in the USA, 44 per cent of households have HDTV services with access to 404 HD channels, followed by Japan (43 per cent of households and 130 channels), France (42 per cent and 55 channels) and then the UK (13 per cent and 50 channels).

Japan consistently emerges as a leading nation in adopting emerging technologies, while this is partly down to its heritage and reputation for technological innovation, does this also suggest that such a culture draws synergies with the Lambda personality type?

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The luxury of online synchronous learning

Isaac Mostovicz writes that the emergence of online synchronous learning is breaking down barriers in the world of education....

While we all strive to receive the best education possible, individual experiences are often limited by geographical constraints. Not all institutions are equal, and in many cases we need to travel to foreign countries just to seek the education we wish. Travelling is difficult and not always possible; even when we are able to travel we spend time and effort just adapting to our new environment and consequently our education suffers.

Modern technology enables us the luxury of bringing education to our doorstep. One of the markets predicted to grow and significantly upgrade the world of education in the next few years is the field of online synchronous learning. These platforms allow for students to participate in a full online classroom experience while enjoying one of the ultimate luxuries – geographical freedom.

Recently, many video conferencing suppliers have started to integrate their technology with Learning Management Systems (LMS) used by education institutions. This enables institutions to create fully interactive multi-party online classes. One of the major players in this arena is Groopex, which integrates Cisco’s WebEx and Microsoft’s Live Meeting (which supply roughly 70% of the videoconferencing market) with Moodle, one of the leading LMS’s.

It seems to only be a matter of time before advances in technology will once again transform the world of education.

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