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Gartner’s Hype Cycle: a quick review

For internal students from (I)BA, Gartner’s Hype Cycle should sound and look familiar, as we discussed it during the BIM class in our 3rd year. For those of you who may have forgotten or that have transferred from other universities or hbo, the hype cycle describes the life cycle of technologies, and contains 5 phases. The life cycle starts off when a technology trigger takes place; a technological breakthrough can cause increased interest and publicity. After the trigger, technological developments quickly move up the graph towards the peak of inflated expectations. In this phase, as the name suggests, expectations peak often beyond an inflated point, only to plummet into the trough of disillusionment, the next phase. In this phase the interest for the technology fails to satisfy the set expectations. If the technology survives this trough, it will slowly climb the slope of enlightenment, where the usefulness and benefits of the technology are discovered and proved. Finally, hopefully, it will reach the last phase; the plateau of productivity, which is characterized by more widespread adoption. [1]

Each year Gartner releases a new hype cycle, on which they locate the current placement of technologies along the graph, as well as an estimate on how long, if at all, it will take that technology to reach the plateau of productivity. Below you will find the hype cycles from the past 3 years:

Gartner’s Hype Cycle 2013 [2]

Gartner’s Hype Cycle 2014 [3]

Gartner’s Hype Cycle 2015 [4]

The hype cycle aims to help managers understand if and when to invest in a certain technology. This is important because not every technology makes it past the trough of disillusionment. Some technologies require early adoptions in order to pay out massive profits, while others require a more careful approach and moderation, and some are better left alone until others have proved the profitability of the technology. [1]


[1] Gartner Hype Cycle, retrieved from accessed on October 11, 2015
[2] Gartner Hype Cycle 2013, retrieved from accessed on October 11, 2015
[3] Gartner Hype Cycle 2014, retrieved from accessed on October 11, 2015
[4] Gartner Hype Cycle 2015, retrieved from accessed on October 11, 2015

Phone Companion

Microsoft seems to not only be following in the footsteps of Apple’s success, but is trying to take it to the next level. Apple has been a very popular and successful brand, which apart from quality, has resulted from their innovative way of linking different Apple devices with one another through iCloud. iCloud allows users to send and receive messages, and use apps and tasks across all their Apple devices at the same time. Microsoft, however, is adding onto their competitor’s strategy and provides the ability to link Windows 10 PCs with devices of other brands and operating systems as well, significantly enlarging their target market.

The Phone Companion app links your Windows 10 PC with your other mobile devices, regardless of whether they have a Windows operating system or not. [1] They allow accessibility to iOS and android users as well, and offer compatible apps for each system, linking users’ devices in the same way iCloud does, without forcing users to buy all their smart products of a single brand.

After Microsoft failed to grab a share in the operation systems market, by lagging behind in the app revolution [2], they are now working hard to gain a good position and obtain a share of the market. In order to take some steps in the right direction, Microsoft has made some acquisitions in recent years, including Sunrise and Acompli; two apps that are compatible with both iOS and Android operating systems. [3]. The release of Phone Companion will take this development to a new level and offers positive prospects for Microsoft in this volatile market.

I find it particularly smart that they reach out to all smart phone users, and that the app isn’t limited to just those few who use a Windows phone. Forcing your users to limit themselves to a single brand, like Apple does, can possibly hurt their sales, as users have to make significant investments in several new devices of the same brand, in order for them to reap the benefits of the linking systems of said brand. In that sense I highly prefer Microsoft’s tactic in this matter, as I can keep using my existing mobile devices, and the initial investment to start enjoying the possibilities Phone Companion offers is limited to only a single purchase.

Of course the question remains whether it is not too late for Microsoft to try and conquer a market already so well established. And then there is also the matter of their competitors, who will most definitely not sit by idly and watch as Microsoft eats away from their market share. However, an intelligent move like that of Microsoft will certainly bring about one beneficial change; the mobile market will become more and more user friendly as the different companies, like Apple and Microsoft, battle each other for the satisfaction of their users.


[1] Sawers, P. (May 26, 2015), ‘Microsoft Announces Phone Companion App for Windows 10 And Teases Cortana for Android and iOs’, retrieved from
[2] Bajarin, B. (May 17, 2013), ‘Microsoft is Missing Apps the Same Way They Missed the Early Internet’, retrieved from
[3] Finneran, M. (June 2, 2015), ‘Microsoft Gets a Whole Lot More Mobile Friendly’, retrieved from