Architectural and component innovation



 Innovations can be ‘architectural’ – changes in the ways different things are put together into a whole system.  Examples might be a motor car, a mobile phone business, a hospital.  And innovations can also be at the ‘component’ level – the parts which go into those systems – for example, the engine, brakes, fuel tank, electrics, etc. which go into a car.  Changes at the component level may take place independent but when the whole architecture changes there are often major winners and losers.

Looking at the case studies of the music or the lighting industry, try to identify which of the changes are architectural and which are component.  What are the implications for different players in terms of the likely threat to them and the ways in which they could respond?

Use the following framework to capture your answers.


Architectural innovation

Component innovation

Likely threat/opportunity for player 1 – and why



Likely threat/opportunity for player 2 – and why








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