Article

Software Platforms

Andrei Hagiu

in The Oxford Handbook of the Digital Economy

Published in print August 2012 | ISBN: 9780195397840
Published online November 2012 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780195397840.013.0003

Series: Oxford Handbooks

Software Platforms

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This article presents a detailed view on developments in business strategies in the market of software platforms. The fundamental characteristic of multisided platforms is the presence of indirect network effects among the multiple “sides.” The broader implication of the Brightcove and Salesforce examples is that web-based software platforms (SPs) challenge the notion that software platforms are inherently multisided. The article then describes the platform governance. The emergence of cloud-based platforms and virtualization are increasingly challenging its traditional status as the key multisided software platform (MSSP) in computer-based industries. Multi-sidedness essentially depends on whether the provider of the SP owns a related product or service, whose value is increased by the applications built upon the SP. Governance rules appear to have emerged as an important strategic instrument for SPs.

Keywords: software platforms; multisided platforms; Brightcove; Salesforce; platform governance; cloud-based platforms; virtualization

Article.  10969 words. 

Subjects: Economics ; Economic Development and Growth

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