Calculators killed slide rules. Word processors killed typewriters. Automobiles killed the horse and buggy.
CDs killed cassette tapes. DVDs killed VHS tapes. Streaming killed both CDs and DVDs.
Technology marches on. We are always building upon past advances in technology to create new technology. New technology is always replacing old technology. As humans, we innovate, or we die.
We are both blessed and cursed with technology. 150 years ago, people navigated cities by horse and buggy. Just as people started to worry that they’ll all drown in the piles of horse manure in the streets, everyone started driving automobiles. The technology we create always creates new problems. The only solution to the new challenges is new technology. The new technology kills off the old technology. And so it continues.
It seems like everyone has a smartphone these days. Smartphones are killing off a lot of old technology.
Here are some of the technologies smartphones will make obsolete:
- Maps and GPS navigation systems
- Most types of books
- Music players
- Cards (both the kind with bar codes on them and business cards)
- Remote controls
- Laptop computers?
Of course, no technology is ever completely killed off. For example, television killed off the radio. Radio still has a place in our world, but it is not nearly as popular as it was before television.
What this means is that if you have a company whose livelihood depends on one of the dying technologies I mentioned above, you better start innovating. If you don’t, you will die.