Inspiring TED Talk: Technology’s Long Tail

Chris Anderson’s talk covers four stages that define a technology’s life and how they affect technology trends.

An interesting instance is in the lifetime of the DVD. When they first came out, they were expensive compared to the current standard of VHS. But when they became cheaper and more widely owned, they reached a critical mass where they began to displace them around 2001. Finally, they begin to approach “free”, where no-name firms are able to mass produce and sell them extremely cheaply. The effect that major technologies have on the growth of smaller firms create a long tail effect.

Acknowledging and understanding these points are key when trying to predict what technology will be like in the future and how users adapt.


Mark is the Lead Author & Editor of Spectechular Blog. Mark established the Spectechular blog to create a source for news and discussion about some of the issues, challenges, news, and ideas relating to Product Management.