Social third-quarter 2013: analysis and outlook

Table of Contents

  1. Summary
  2. The central role of file sync and share
  3. Microsoft: a nervous breakdown waiting to happen
  4. Is LinkedIn reaching the end of viral growth?
  5. Near-term outlook
  6. About Stowe Boyd

1. Summary

The third quarter of 2013 was a period of continued consolidation in the enterprise social and work management markets.

Key highlights during the fourth quarter in the social technologies space include these:

  • File sync and share is becoming the central hub of the distributed core architecture that has emerged at the intersection between personal and business computing. A large number of contenders — Dropbox, Box Inc., Hightail (see disclosure), Intralinks Inc., Microsoft Corp., and Google Inc. — are converging to develop enterprise strategies.
  • Microsoft is on shaky ground with the company’s reorganization, a $900 million writedown on Surface tablets, and Steve Ballmer’s unanticipated departure within a year. Nothing underscores the corporate giant more than its acquisition of Nokia, which is a huge gamble just so it can carve out a piece of the mobile devices market.
  • LinkedIn’s trajectory of high growth and user engagement seems to be working, but there are storm clouds, namely the company’s slowed growth and a lawsuit.

This quarterly wrapup analyzes these events and trends, and provides a near-term outlook for the next 18 to 24 months.

(Disclosure: Hightail is backed by Alloy Ventures, a venture capital firm that invests in the parent company of GigaOM Research, Giga Omni Media.)

Source: flickr user Kasaa

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