It amazes me that so many times people who are in charge of large and small software companies make dumb decisions. They get nice salaries but often make decisions that come back and bite them. One good strategy for any large or small company that is lagging behind on the PC or Mac OS market is to create software for GNU/Linux. Linux is growing as a platform and has millions of users. This is an emerging market with great potential. Linux still lacks certain software, especially professional applications such as video editing and many others. There are several projects that found a huge following under the GNU/Linux platform but were not as popular under Windows or Mac OS. It is a great strategy to start creating software for GNU/Linux to gain an advantage over your competition and to gain market share. Also, to be the first in an emerging market such as Linux can prove to be very advantages and beneficial in the long run. Software companies should get their foot into the door of the Linux world before other large companies come along and reap a lot of benefits.
There are a lot of arguments that might be limiting software companies to get into Linux. One is that the GNU/Linux platform market share is too small and not worth getting into. However, because Linux is growing and gaining momentum you could find yourself left behind while other great software projects will take over your market. It is essential to be there before your competition. Currently, the Linux market is around 2% on the desktop but that is definitely increasing. The first company into an emerging market usually has the upper hand.
Another argument is that GNU/Linux is open source and there is not much money in it. It is true that Linux is open source and majority of the applications are as well. However, Linux runs proprietary software and there are many that are popular. Certain professional software will probably never be open source but the need is still there and people are willing to pay. Users of Linux have money and are willing to buy software that is of an excellent quality and will enable them to create professional projects, because they are still saving money in the long run.
In conclusion, the GNU/Linux platform is growing and it is beneficial for large and small software creators to get into the market before their competition does. This will give them an upper hand and will give them a new market to flourish in. Many people who use Linux are willing to purchase proprietary and open source software, especially if it is of a good quality and for professional use. Just because the Linux market is only 2%, it should not be overlooked, as it is an emerging market with great growth potential. Many applications have found popularity under GNU/Linux while not being so successful on Windows or the Mac OS platform.
What software companies do you think could get an upper hand or a business advantage if they started creating their software for GNU/Linux?