Archive for May, 2009

SSCF : Agile Supply Chain Redesign for Oustsourcing Processes

Wednesday, May 27th, 2009

Last Tuesdat 26 we had a seminar of the Student Supply Chain Forum chaired by Paul W.P.J. Grefen.  Mr. Grefen talked about the business process outsourcing in supply chain networks.

We also had the participation of the industry represented by DAF trucks and IBM to show us the real scenarios where new research efforts could been applied.

IMG_0689 Paul W.P.J. Grefen


Michiel Kuipers, Manager Global Logistics Europe Business transformation and IT at IBM


Adriaan Kanobbe, Purchasing Director NPR and projects,Purchasing PACCAR Europe (DAF Trucks)

Industria Master students

Master students discussing the business case


The organization of this chapter was leaded by Jeroen van Duren and Ricardo Seguel


Event Poster

Service Innovation : Smartphones. Service Inside! Synchronization as a service

Monday, May 25th, 2009

Apple redefined the smartphone with the iPhone, a sleek device with an excellent user interface controlled by your fingers through a touch screen. Apple enhanced even more the customer experience integrating an Application Store. Applying the same strategy form from iPod+iTunes, as we discussed in a previous post, where the user co-create value thanks to the mix of product and services.

Today, is not possible to bring just a product, the new smartphone operating systems like Google ‘s Android, offer services out-of-the box . Including an applications store called Android Market and Google services like Gmail and Calendar that provides front-stage interaction to their back-stage servers. You no longer need to backup your mail, every Google application is synchronized with Google’s servers (Video 1). All these services and new ones like the Google latitude for location sharing, enable the user to get a great costumer experience with richer interactions. Right now, even Microsoft is trying to include services into their windows mobile, with myphone you will able to backup your contacts and appointments.

Video 1: Google Android

Palm took the serivce integration further, with a new operating system called WebOS. The new Palm’s Operating System use “cloud computing” (or Internet as a Service, that is an emerging tendency which allows to companies use higher processing capacities from third parties with less costs for them) to do server side processing from your information sources (not just Google’s applications, like Android) that are available to the user trough a single mobile interface provided with the new Palm Pre.
The fundamental concept behind the WebOS is Synergy, that takes synchronization as a service. When you add an appointment or modify a contact in the smartphone, the changes will be synchronized into the palm’s cloud. This Synergy happens from many sources, like Facebook. So, when you add a friend in your Facebook account, it will be reflected in your phone contacts, even if you got a repeated contact (same contact form different sources), it will be unified at a single one at your contacts application in the smartphone (Video 2).

Video 2: Palm Pre WebOS Synergy

The innovation from Palm is driven by services out of the box from different providers, where you no longer need to synchronize your data with your computer. All the synchronization happens in the Palm’s servers from different kind of sources. This service innovation takes the smartphone user experience a step further, with richer interactions that let users to co-create value. Palm is back from the dead with a great value offer that sets a new trend in mobile devices.

Egon Lüftenegger

Amazon Kindle : e-books as a Service

Saturday, May 9th, 2009

E-books readers are devices that use e-ink technology to offer a book-like experience thanks to an easy to read screen, enabling users to keep reading for many hours without headaches.

There are many of e-book readers, but the most important ones are the Amazon Kindle and Sony Reader. The Sony Reader supports more e-books formats than Amazon and also offer a model with touch screen, but it’s e-book store is weak. You can’t find all the books that Amazon has.

Sony it’s a hardware oriented company that use an e-book store to sell more Sony Readers. In the other hand, Amazon it’s a e-book provider that use a e-book reader platform to sell many books as possible.

Amazon complemented their offer with the Kindle for iPhone, that introduced a new feature called whispersync (Fig 1). This functionality lets you synchronize your readings between your Kindle e-book reader with your Kindle for iPhone. For example, you can use your iPhone to read when you are in the subway or waiting in a queue. But when you are at home relaxed in your sofa, you continue your experience with the Kindle e-book reader at the same page that you left the Kindle for iPhone.

Fig.1. The whispersync offers great value, letting the users to sync their iPhone application with the Kindle reader.

Amazon’s strategy shifted from the Product Oriented Kindle e-book reader with an e-book store to a Service Oriented Kindle, offering a total customer experience thanks to the richer interactions that are delivered trough the Kindle e-book reader and the Kindle for iPhone, enabling the customer to co-create value (Fig.2). The iPhone application is not trying to cannibalize the Kindle e-book reader, in deed Kindle for iPhone will engage more users to the Kindle service. Amazon is not an electronics manufacturer, it’s the biggest bookstore on the planet that is aiming to be the biggest e-book store on the planet.

Fig.2. The users of the Amazon Kindle service can co-create value thank to the rich interactions delivered by iPhone and the e-reader.

The shift form product to service of Amazon Kindle is the greatest differentiation with the competition. They can’t compete to the value that offer “e-books as a Service”, where the service use the devices to sell e-books.