3 Times Big Tech Put Their Differences Aside

Big Tech firms don’t always get along, but when they do, they can achieve great things together.

Big Tech is the term used to describe the world’s leading information tech companies, most notably Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL), Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN), Facebook (NASDAQ: FB), Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) and Google (NASDAQ: GOOGL)(NASDAQ: GOOG). 

While these are all steadfast competitors, there have been a number of times where they have teamed up with one another to bring a solution to the table for a given problem that benefits each of them. 

1. Smart Home Devices

Having smart devices in the home to help with everyday issues is becoming more and more popular. Big Tech companies have been competing with each other to try and earn valuable space in the consumer’s home. However, Google, Apple, and Amazon have all come together as part of a new partnership with Zigbee Alliance. 

Currently, there is no congruent network in the home that allows different branded smart devices to connect with one another This partnership aims to change that with its ‘Project Connected Home Over IP’ initiative. 

The goal is for the currently fragmented systems for smart home devices to be able to work together. This would be achieved by developing a singular network that all of these different devices can connect to, allowing them to interact with one another no matter what brand the devices may be. 

If this project is successful, it means that manufacturers of smart home devices will no longer have to support multiple different networks. Consumers will also not have to worry when purchasing smart home devices that they may not be compatible with the devices they already have at home. 

Revenue from the smart home market is set to be almost $91 billion in 2020, with a CAGR of 15% until 2024. The current level of household penetration is 9.3%, with this figure set to rise to 19.3% by 2024. Therefore, there are plenty of incentives for Big Tech to work together on this project.

2. Data Transferring

In July 2018, Microsoft, Facebook, Twitter (NYSE: TWTR) and Google partnered up for an ambitious data project, with Apple later joining. Its idea is to have an open-source framework rather than each of these individual Big Tech companies building their own frameworks from scratch. 

This project is known as the Data Transfer Project and its goal is to be a new vehicle to transport data directly between services without having a need to download anything and then re-upload it. The likes of calendars, photos, contacts, and email could be seamlessly transferred between publicly available APIs from the likes of Twitter, Microsoft and Google. 

Its latest developments include photo and video transfer tools between Facebook and Google, with the hopes of increasing usage of both platforms.

3. Healthcare

In 2019, Microsoft, Google, and Apple teamed together to help develop a way for medical professionals to digitally and safely access the health records of patients. This partnership is called the CARIN Alliance and hopes to disrupt the $3.65 trillion healthcare industry.

These Big Tech firms are working closely with leading hospitals and health insurers as part of this initiative. The tool is called the CARIN Blue Button API and aims to be a standard way for sharing health data, such as results of medical testing, details of doctor visits and medical procedures. 

These companies have their own initiatives relating to healthcare. However, as there was no standard data model in existence, it made it very difficult to obtain access to clinical information. 

This new initiative will allow for a lot more transparency and efficiency when it comes to a medical professional being able to get a good picture of the health of a patient no matter what facility they received this care. This project is still working in the draft stage, but testing did begin toward the end of last year in the United States. With the global healthcare market worth almost $282 billion in 2019 and with a forecasted CAGR of 7.9%, Big Tech is looking to do what they can to get a slice of the action.

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