The Three Dimensions of Product Engineering

23 Nov, 2022
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Innovations stem from ideas. Yet not all of them can take shape into products or businesses. Sometimes, these ideas may be well ahead of the time and seem more appropriate for a sci-fi movie than for a business. Some other ideas may look like ‘Eureka moments’ at their birth but may turn out to be irrelevant or impossible. We find many examples of both kinds.

Disruptive businesses, like Airbnb, Netflix, Amazon, etc. changed the way we see and experience the world. Some innovations that were huge successful previously like Nokia, quickly lost relevance and customers when more advanced competitors emerged. Though, any business idea is worth considering, the successful innovators are those who evaluate, implement, and improvise their ideas from time to time.  

With the world growing more digital, any idea can be implemented through software applications. Along with businesses that are digitally transforming into software companies, established software companies and software start-ups are all keen on innovating continuously.  

What to create – Projects, Products, or Platforms? 

The innovations can take the shape of software applications, services, products, or platforms. Products offer some advantages over projects and platforms offer some more. So, how should a business decide whether to make a product, or a platform.  

This blog is to help such businesses make the product or platform decision. 

Making a product, creating a platform, participating in an existing platform – The three dimensions of Product Engineering

Software solutions are evolving in interesting ways. When encapsulated as products, they enable the makers to receive intellectual property rights and gives them a reliable revenue stream. Such software products are manufactured to end users or customers.  

As customers collaborated with each other and formed connections and means to share tools and build more advanced tools, these products have evolved into platforms. Platforms have additional advantages. They open new revenue streams and cater to communities of users, and not just to individual users.  

For all the advantages and the additional revenue platforms offer, the market seems to be talking a lot about converting products to platforms. However, many fail to recognize an important and easier alternative. 

Not all products can or need to build their own platforms to reach communities of users. Participating in an existing platform also provides the same benefits of creating a platform but with less effort.  

In a Nutshell, a single idea can manifest into several forms. 
It can become
  • A Product 
  • A platform (Directly or by product evolution) 
  • A participant in or component of an existing Platform. 

How to decide whether to build a product or a platform 

Many of the top companies in the world like Apple, Amazon, Microsoft, offer platforms. So, naturally many assume that entering the market with a platform or scaling up their existing product into a platform would ensure success. However, the business ecosystem is not simple. What works for some may not work for others. Hence, strategies, plans, and goals are specific to businesses and should be implemented with great care. 

As leaders in Product Engineering, coMakeIT has been guiding several ISVs, SaaS companies, Start-ups, and other Companies in building resilient and future-ready products and platforms. We have experience in guiding several start-ups in their journey to established product makers. We helped several companies in establishing their Offshore Product Development Centre in India by providing access to quality talent and guiding them with the necessary technical expertise. With our collaboration, our customers who started the journey as a small, dedicated team have now established a branch of their companies in India.  

coMakeIT is your Perfect Product Engineering Partner 

Are you seeking collaboration with a technology expert to build your product or platform? Do you want to measure which path is smoother – product or platform development? Are you scaling up your product to the platform? Are you making your products resilient and platform-ready? 

Talk to us, or visit us @ Product engineering Services

Divya Prathima
The author was a java Developer at coMakeIT before turning into a stay-at-home-mom. She slowed down to make art, tell stories, read books on fiction, philosophy, science, art-history, write about science, parenting, and observe technology trends. She loves to write and aspires to write simple and understandable articles someday like Yuval Noah Harari. We are very happy to have her back at coMakeIT and contribute to our relevant and thought provoking content.

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