Commercial open source firms go to market trying to create an “unfair” competitive advantage that lets them win customers more easily than their competitors. So do most other companies. Commercial open source firms do this by bypassing the traditional purchasing process by getting their software into customer companies for free, before the customers even know they will need the software. But is an employee’s decision to install a piece of open source software a good decision for the company? After all, every software locks in its users, whether open source or not.
[…] There is much less demand for open source services than one might have expected. But it is not only the demand-side. The supply of such services is also problematic. Why? Because it is a hard business to be in. Why that? Because there are no juicy profit margins. Now, that needs some explanation.
IDC’s Matt Lawton recently released a new report about open source adoption:
“However, project vendors, project partners, and vendor partners need to step up and provide support and attendant services in order to move the adoption of OSS from early adopters to the mainstream. Only 12% of all projects are supported by a commercial software vendor, and, incredibly, less than 1% of the projects have attendant services sourced from service providers.” […]
Wow! Open source is in the enterprise, and only 1% of those off-the-shelf software components have attendant services for them?