Reverse Innovation: Developing and boosting the TV Apps industry

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For the company Bianor (awards winning mobile developers) I wrote a guest blog on mobile's place within Reverse Innovation.
The concept of Reverse Innovation can be applied or can be at least understanding to the emerging TV app market as well.

As described on Wikipedia, reverse innovation is:
A term referring to an innovation seen first, or likely to be used first, in the developing world before spreading to the industrialized world.

Mr. Govindarajan elaborates in the Bloomberg article that it’s not only needed to capture growth in emerging markets, but also to fuel growth in home- and developed markets.
Thus as he puts it: “The oxygen for future growth”.

When can Reverse Innovation add value to the TV applications market?
The TV app industry finds itself in the pioneering / introduction phase of the Industry Life Cycle. Meaning right now the need for Reverse Innovation might seem low, but from a strategic and growth point of view, certain amount of attention should be given.

Another reason for appropriate attention is the application of the Power Curve dynamics on the industry. If companies can become first runner in their niche, the bigger the inequality can become with the rest of the competitors/market landscape. Inequality in this case refers to market share, revenue and so on.
A good example is Google. Biggest market share in terms of search engine activity and a more than proportional/average share of the market's revenue.

According to Treacy and Wiersema's Value Disciplines model, Product Leadership companies are strong in innovation and brand marketing, operating in dynamic markets.Product dynamics

Taking into account the image at the left (taken from Innovation and R&D Management), entrants account for the largest part of product innovation, from there on it is Process R&D (in terms of Life Cycle it's in a Mature phase, heavier competition, decreasing margins etc).

In this yet-to-be defined market, companies should strive for Product Leadership and put its stamp on their niche / market with their products. Good example here is Apple.

Does Reverse Innovation apply to one-screen and/or also two- and three-screen (companion) applications?

This depends on the value proposition of the company and country dynamics in their usage of devices.
In this article examples are given which conditions affect consumer adoption.

Another consideration is the technological advancement of devices/infrastucture.
Mobile TV for instance will grow substantially in India due to the lack of other infrastructures. This doesn't mean the mobile technology/devices are ready to support any advanced TV app.
To add, smartphone penetration is on overall still relatively low which impacts the development of two- or three screen TV experiences.

Are apps essentially the same, no matter the geo-location?
Right now they are, pioneering phases do not yet show the refined differentiations in developments or user experiences.
Experiences are tend to be kept the same, Miso CEO Somrat Niyogi explained this as well in the interview with AppMarket, differentiating only when particular devices have unique features which can alter the experience.

As the app market will mature, all sorts of refinements will play a more important role. An earlier article, Dynamics of Interaction and Social TV Experience Architecture, fits in this when it comes to the TV experience refinements.
Interaction dynamics (culturally/societally defined) are just one aspect which can alter applications.

Can Reverse Innovation be applied to the emerging TV app market?
Media convergence and multiplatform experiences are challenging the companies due to the amount of preconditions and factors that need to be taken into account. Continents differs, from a culturally and technologically point of perspective.
Though, China and other countries in Asia are hotbeds to penetrate and create revenue.
Consumerism and media consumption are increasing and the TV applications will be a big chunk of it.
Asia by 2015 - 400 Million Digital TV Homes With 40 Million On IPTV, Revenues Will Top $40bn, says enough?

Taking and applying learnings from these markets into home markets are also executed by companies like Proctor & Gamble, Nokia and Microsoft.

Why should companies explore Reverse Innovation?
* Findings Identify $10 Billion in New Revenue Opportunities for Media Companies
* TV Applications and Widgets Market Worth over €1 Billion Euro by 2013
* One Billion TV Apps Downloaded by 2015: GigaOM Analyst Michael Wolf


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