I was exploring on internet about Oracle’s offer for Bea systems. During that exploration, I encountered a blog post which discusses the Oracle’s offer, around many interesting facets, including a speculation about merger between SAP and IBM. Sometime back I read about Microsoft’s interest in Yahoo. Years before we saw a huge merger between HP and Compaq. All these inputs triggered a thought in mind my mind – a merger between Adobe and Apple. It might be my flight of fancy, however the merger can have many practical benefits, to each of the entities.
Adobe has strong foothold in applications and products such as Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Acrobat, Adobe CS3 and now Adobe Flex. In the era of Rich Internet Applications, Adobe’s Flex should play a very important role. Historically flash has been a popular portable runtime, but only for browsers. Adobe Integrated Runtime provides the same capability on desktop so that Flex applications can be run as if native applications. Apart from these products, Adobe supports ColdFusion, a server-side web platform, similar to ASP/JSP/PHP/Rails. Very recently there was a news indicating Adobe’s interest in online office suite. Having a good foothold in the products space, what Adobe does not have (or at least I don’t know) is exposure to hardware platforms, appliances and operating systems. This is where Apple’s expertise can support to deliver dramatic results.
Apple has been the choice of connoisseurs. Mac, MacOS X, etc have become popular and their users are difficult to be convinced to switch to another platform. Innovative products and services such as iPod, iPhone and iTunes helped to develop a creative and positive image in the minds of people. Despite all these success stories, Apple could not be successful in application software, comparing with its platforms and appliances.
Apple’s experience in hardware, platforms and services combined with Adobe experience in applications, platforms and development tools complementary for each other. Of course Apple is larger in terms of revenue, employee strength, number years in business etc. Two choices are available (as I see them) – Merger or Collaboration. Merger of Adobe and Apple can emerge as an entity which can be more innovative and more competitive, to play an important role in years to come.
But after all, this is all day-dreaming…