The third platform is currently described as the convergence of four technology trends on business. These trends are mobility, cloud, social and big data – they fundamentally change the way people and businesses relate to technology. As we embark on the true information age, more trends and technologies may be added as they gain traction and importance in the market.
The main impact is the speed of this transformation as it is faster than any mainframe or client/server platform adoption and as such, has a direct effect on anyone doing business in the world today. From IDC’s perspective “what we call IT is rapidly shifting to the third platform” and they predict that “89% of all future IT spending will be in the third platform.” If these numbers are to play out, it will represent the depletion of nearly half the traditional platforms in operation today.
IT departments today are moving away from heavy legacy systems and are re-directing their spend into the third platform, sometimes at the detriment of established ERP vendors. The challenge arises when the legacy systems are exhausting the lion’s share of the IT budget every year before any re-investment into new technology is considered. IT is waking up fast and needs to re-skill to learn how to take advantage of the new opportunities these agile platforms offer.