Is Blockchain Right for You? Bridging the Legacy Gap

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In 2017, it has seemed as if every day there were new reports, predictions, stories, and articles on how innovative and disruptive blockchain technologies can be.

The allure of a decentralized ledger is powerful, especially in financial services. The great appeal may stem from the fact that there are multiple use-cases for the blockchain. It does not begin and end as the backbone for cryptocurrencies. In fact, the flexibility of the blockchain is a primary reason why investors and technologists alike have taken an interest in the technology.

There are many use cases for blockchain, but the one that could have the most impact on society is using it as the decentralized ledger for transactions of any type. Cryptocurrencies do not have to be developed for the blockchain to have a major impact on the payments landscape.

It’s clear that technology companies are growing to dominate the peer-to-peer payment landscape. These brands are making strides to take over payments for small businesses. This trend isn’t new. It all began with Paypal, but since then, many payment companies have popped up (Venmo, Moneris, Square, etc.). In addition to those financial technology companies, brands such as Facebook, Google, Apple, and Amazon are making their way into the payment landscape. If people can send each other money over an app they already use every day, what chance to banks have to win back the market?

Challenges to Technology Integration in Banks

Despite its growing popularity, the blockchain isn’t a magical solution that can solve all of a bank’s problems. There are challenges associated with upgrading any technology suite, but especially those that involve updating an outdated legacy system.

For a blockchain-based solution to integrate with a legacy system, all processes must be explicitly defined and automated. Any ad hoc inputs, reports, or processes need to be standardized and defined. No process can run on the blockchain if it requires human intervention. Blockchain-based solutions need to be able to update automatically for the decentralization to realize its full potential.

Internal processes and outputs must be clear and concise while meeting a business need. If there are ledgers with poorly defined purposes that are to be moved to a single, decentralized ledger, the blockchain solution will not be able to work until the purpose and inputs of those ledgers are defined within a greater system.

The other major challenge to creating an integrated blockchain solution is finding a place for manual processes and transactions. If a process is not automated, the blockchain cannot move it to a decentralized ledger. Banks will need to either automate these processes or find a place for them in the new, decentralized, automated system.

These challenges aside, there are several other considerations to be made when modernizing a legacy system with the blockchain. We will cover them next time in Part Two of this article.

To stay up to date with the latest news about financial technology, follow us on Twitter @VeridayHQ or LinkedIn.

5 Most Impactful Digital Transformation Trends in Finance

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It’s clear that the financial services industry is experiencing digital transformation. Driving that transformation is a series of trends that incentivizes banks to change. Consumers no longer want the same old experience; they want convenient, secure solutions that meet their banking needs. These five digital transformation trends will encourage banks to improve their digital capabilities and advance into a new era of banking.

1) Blockchain

2017 has been the year of the blockchain. For the uninitiated, blockchain refers to a digital ledger in which transactions are recorded chronologically and publicly. The blockchain is so attractive to banks because it offers transparency, security and lowers transaction costs. Banks are working to increase the effectiveness of peer-to-peer (P2P) payments, and the blockchain can be the foundation of that system.

Blockchain-based technologies are driving digital transformation in banking by offering the possibility of an entirely transparent ledger of transactions. The blockchain can make it easier for consumers to transfer assets between each other. Blockchain-based systems can add a layer to security to P2P payment and lending systems, a feature that is already popular with consumers.

By adding a layer of reliability to P2P payment systems using blockchain, banks can increase consumers confidence in their ability to deliver branchless banking.

2) Branchless Banking

While some customers enjoy using branches to meet their banking needs, an ever-increasing portion of the population wants to be able to handle all their banking without ever stepping in a branch. In fact, over 40% of consumers have not used a bank branch in the past six months.

Consumers want to do their banking without having to go to a branch, and digital transformation is the cause. Many people have become used to shopping online, watching TV online and using the internet for nearly every transaction they need to make. Banks are no exception. They need to offer a high-quality, secure, branchless experience to keep their customers satisfied.

Features such as online personal banking, offering the ability to sign up for services online and digital peer-to-peer payment systems will allow consumers to forego using a branch while still being able to meet their banking needs. The blockchain is one new feature that can facilitate branchless banking.

3) New Features

Once upon a time, debit cards were a new, innovative feature that could be used to excite customers. Today, those same debit cards are being phased out for more convenient payment systems. If a bank does not continually develop new features, consumers will look to FinTech challengers to scratch their itch for innovation.

Developing new capabilities, such as online banking, P2P payments or building an app has changed the way that banks interact with customers. The status quo changes quickly, and what is fresh and innovative in 2017 will one day be considered outdated.

An essential feature of digital transformation is the drive to continually innovate and improve the customer experience using technology solutions. This continual innovation will lead to more fundamental changes that shake the banking industry to its core. The innovation caused by digital transformation may alter aspects of financial services that were once thought to be immune to change.

4) Cashless Transactions

Cash currencies are becoming less common in societies all across the world. The process of states transitioning from cash to digital currencies has already begun. On November 8th, 2016, India announced a recall of over 80% of the country’s currency, something that wouldn’t be possible unless the move to digital transactions had already begun. Thanks to the growing ubiquity of digital payment apps, online banking, and P2P lending platforms, cash has lost much of its usefulness.

Paper currency is on its way out, thanks to technologies such as blockchain ledgers and P2P payment systems. To many, carrying cash is an annoyance, and even the smallest transactions are conducted with a credit or debit card. In the future, cash will have no place in any developed society. It’s time for banks to implement digital payment systems that require nothing but a smartphone. One day, even cards will be considered a nuisance.

The future of transactions lies in peer-to-peer payment systems. Nobody wants to have to find an ATM just to get cash so they can pay their friend back for lunch. If you cannot provide this digital feature, customers will lose patience.

5) Enhanced Security

All consumers need to be aware of online security threats. Recent, high-profile examples of cybercrime have contributed to some individuals being skeptical of any digital technology. Even well-known companies who are digital natives such as Amazon, Google, and Facebook have to deal with these concerns. Consumers want to ensure their data is safe, especially when the data contains sensitive information that a bank might need.

Banks need to develop security protocols that consumers can easily learn. Banks should educate their customers on things such as: The importance of protecting passwords, using secure connections, always being vigilant of potential security threats and, reporting suspicious emails and links.

By teaching customers to follow these procedures banks can build consumer trust in their bank’s security capabilities. Building that trust will motivate customers to begin their own personal digital transformation, pushing them to complete everyday transactions through digital channels.

These five digital transformation trends are not only affecting banks but the financial services industry as a whole. Financial service professionals need to adapt to what consumers want. Banks need to offer convenient service, where customers control the interaction. Most consumers have already begun to expect some level of digital mastery. Are you ready to meet their needs? Let us know on Twitter @VeridayHQ or LinkedIn. If you want to learn more about digital transformation, you can check out more of our blog posts here.

Liferay Symposium North America 2017

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Are you ready for the next Liferay Symposium? As a Liferay Platinum Partner and Gold Sponsor, Veriday is already looking forward to attending. In just two weeks, industry leader and engineers from around the world will descend on Austin, Texas for Liferay Symposium North America 2017. Speak with Liferay’s key developers and experts. Learn how YOU can use Liferay with practical sessions and workshops. Discover best practices and innovative solutions for the business challenges you are focused on solving.

This premier event for Liferay’s customers, digital business leaders, partners and community developers in North America will include two days of expert sessions, hands-on workshops, networking opportunities, access to Liferay’s top executives and architects, and keynotes from digital experience thought leaders.

Attending the Liferay Symposium will give your technology leaders the knowledge they need to apply Liferay DXP, the most recent, most advanced platform from Liferay to their digital transformation project. You really don’t want to miss this.

Liferay Symposium North America 2017

October 16th-17th

Hilton Austin

Austin, Texas

#LSNA17

For more information:

On the event, please visit the event page.

About Liferay, visit www.liferay.com.

About how we use Liferay to facilitate digital transformation, check out our solutions page.

Assessing the Digital Landscape for Financial Institutions

Assessing the Digital Landscape for Financial Institutions: How to Lead the Charge With People and Technology

Read the eBook on Liferay’s Website

Veriday is a Liferay Platinum Partner. We’ve been successfully designing and implementing solutions using Liferay since 2005. We are one of Liferay’s strongest partners because we do more than just development. At Veriday, we combine design thinking and technical engineering to create high performing digital and user experiences. We help you transform your whole enterprise by developing great customer experiences and modernizing business operations. Our ground up approach ensures you are creating a sustainable long-term platform for business agility and growth.

Liferay DXP is a digital experience platform that has many use cases. The flexibility and power of the Liferay platform are some of the reasons Veriday believes so staunchly in it. That’s why we use it to build digital experience solutions.

At Veriday, we also have an interest in building digital marketing solutions for financial institutions. Our product, Digital Agent, is created with financial agents in mind. Recently, I was perusing the Liferay blog and discovered an excellent eBook that can help financial institutions answer some questions they might have about digital transformation.

Assessing the Digital Landscape for Financial Institutions: How to Lead the Charge with People and Technology

Read the eBook

Assessing the Digital Landscape for Financial Institutions: How to Lead the Charge With People and Technology contains insights into the state of digital transformation at financial institutions. It answers the questions: What are the barriers to digital transformation? What role does technology play in customer experience? How can the customer experience be improved by breaking down silos?

These questions (and more) are answered in this eBook by Liferay. I strongly recommend you check it out if you work at a financial institution that is considering undergoing the process of digital transformation.

Remember, we are a Liferay Platinum Partner. With over a decade of experience developing on Liferay, Veriday can strategize, design and build a technology solution that helps meet your business’ goals. Feel free to reach out to us with questions about how we can assist in creating better digital experiences using Liferay DXP. 

Follow us on Twitter @VeridayHQ,

Gartner announces Liferay as a leading portal solution for 7th year in a row

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For the 7th year in a row, Gartner has ranked Liferay at the top of their list for “Critical Capabilities of Horizontal Portals.” Gartner, one of the world’s pre-emptive technology research firms, regularly releases information technology insights for IT and other business leaders. Liferay DXP, the newest version of the open-sourced engagement platform, finished near the top of their list for “Critical Capabilities for Horizontal Portals” in nearly every category.

The report scored 16 vendors according to their strengths in four portal scenarios:

  1. Partner and Supplier Portals
  2. Portals for Marketing, E-Commerce, and Support
  3. Digital Workplace
  4. Portal as a Common Architectural Framework

Liferay finished as a top-three most valuable portal in regards to partner and supplier portals, digital workplace, and as a common architectural framework. Liferay also finished just outside the top 5 as a B2C marketing, e-commerce and support portal. The results highlight how Liferay can be successfully applied to a wide variety of scenarios.

As Gartner put it:

Liferay excels in the portal as common architecture use case, and it exceeds the requirements for leading-edge customers across our other three use cases.”

Gartner found that customers regard Liferay highly for its sturdy architecture and development, the ability to integrate Liferay into various systems and how supportive it is of mobile and multichannel use cases. The community that has grown around Liferay lauds it for its use of the open-source model. Liferay gives developers the ability to customize the platform to suit their unique needs.

You can download the full Gartner report here.

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With such a flexible, open-source solution it’s no surprise that Liferay scored so highly in these rankings. While proprietary solutions may be able to solve garden-variety issues, they cannot be altered for any purpose. Proprietary solutions cannot be used to create unique solutions that can be tailored to address any problem you might have.

If you think a Liferay solution might be right for your business, feel free to contact us. Veriday is one of Liferay’s leading partners with years of experience creating customer Liferay solutions.

How Do Customer Experience Improvements Impact Revenue?

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This post was authored by Matthew Draper and originally appeared here on Liferay.com

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Without seeing detailed statistics concerning the impact of online customer experience (CX) on their company’s bottom line, many executives ask why it matters for their revenue goals. However, the online customer experience-revenue relationship has become clearer and clearer in recent years. Crucially, those who are still in the dark about the revenue benefits of customer experience improvement may be missing out on optimizing their company’s performance.

While common sense may dictate that there is indeed such a thing as CX-revenue relationship, better understanding this idea can help you make informed, impactful decisions about your company’s online presence. Recently, Mercury Insurance used Liferay to overhaul and consolidate their insurance customer portal. As a result, Mercury Insurance found that customer experience greatly improved, leading to higher ratings, reduced costs and many more positive effects. It’s just one example of improved customer engagement leading to measurable company benefits.

How Does Customer Experience Affect Revenue?

According to Forrester Research, good CX can lead to client retention, enrichment and advocacy, which all have loyalty-driven revenue potential. While there are many reasons why a client may terminate his or her services with a company, all businesses should prevent poor digital customer experience from being a cause.

But how will improving CX improve a business’ revenue?

While hard numbers on customer experience-revenue relationships can be difficult to come by, research done by Harvard Business Review shows there is a direct link between CX and annual revenue increase. Their survey polled customers about their experiences with both transaction-based and subscription-based companies. For transaction companies, clients who had the best experiences were shown to spend 140% more than those who were shown to have the poorest experience. For companies based around subscription services, it was shown that members who rated their experience at the lowest score possible only had a 43% chance of still being a member one year later. In contrast, those who scored their experiences at the highest ratings had a 74% chance of still being a member in a year.

In either case, it is clear that positive customer engagement meant a greater likelihood of higher revenue and happier clients who could advocate your brand to other potential clients.

However, not every customer experience manager takes long-term relationships into account when determining profits. But the widespread effects of happy clients should be part of every CX decision. If you are a CX leader attempting to make improvements in your company’s customer engagement, it is crucial that you tailor your investments to your brand’s unique needs, consider non-revenue benefits like happy customers becoming advocates and think about both complete CX overhauls as well as targeting the worst experiences reported by your clients.

Three Types of CX-Revenue Improvement Strategies

As detailed by Forrester, there are generally three types of online customer experience-revenue relationships. These show how a company should focus its initial CX improvement initiatives in order to see the greatest effects on your company’s revenue.

Broad Improvements to Customer Experience – In this strategy, efforts to improve CX can be applied across the board and in all types of interactions that customers have with your organization. Any individual aspect of customer experience improvement should result in improved revenue, but broad improvements may have the most noticeable results, as they will impact the largest amount of customers. This strategy relates to a linear customer experience-revenue relationship, which often affects companies like internet service providers, big-box retailers and auto insurance providers.

Focused Improvements on the Worst Customer Experiences – You may find that the greatest gains can be found in primarily addressing the worst experiences. Focus your time and energy on improving the worst customer experiences, which can likely be distinguished through customer surveys, feedback and records of complaints that your customer service team has received. By doing so, you can prevent customers from dropping your service and are likely to find the largest return on investment in your customer experience improvement efforts. This strategy relates to a relationship of diminishing returns between customer experience improvement and revenue, which is often felt by credit card providers, wireless service providers and airlines.

Focused Improvements on the Most Positive Customer Experiences – Further improving the highest levels of CX could result in the most dramatic revenue increases, while improving the poorest experiences will do less for your bottom line. Keep your customer experience improvement efforts focused on the most positive experiences seen by your business, which can likely be determined through positive feedback received in surveys. In doing so, customers who have a positive experience with your business will be encouraged to return time and time again, as well as become an advocate who can bring in additional customers. This strategy relates to an exponential CX-revenue relationship that often affects credit card providers, wireless service providers and airlines.

While these three types of revenue-impacting digital customer experience strategies should be individually tailored by each company that adopts them, they can be a helpful guide to what your business should first address. By focusing your efforts while improving CX, you can create a successful plan for optimizing customer portals and other forms of engagement.

So what is keeping some businesses from improving customer experience?

Many see improving CX as not being worth the cost. However, improvements have been shown to actually reduce costs due to needing to handle fewer complaints, as shown by information provided by Medallia. That means less money spent on fielding upset clients, happier employees who don’t have to spend all day handling complaints and more time available for optimizing internal processes and other forms of customer engagement.

These factors are vital in determining the long-term goals of a company and weighing the true value of online customer experience and what can be done to improve it.

2017 State of Digital Marketing [Infographic]

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Between social media, SEO, email marketing, analytics and, creating content, digital marketers have a lot to do these days. Digital marketing moves and evolves very quickly. It can be hard to understand what is important and what needs to be improved.

The Search Engine Journal has an annual survey where they ask digital marketers what they plan to do in the coming year. The survey asks how digital marketers set timelines for various activities, where they allocate their budgets, and how they define success.

This infographic summarizes the results of their findings in a fantastic way. There are several noteworthy results from the survey,  but one, in particular, jumps out to me. It’s interesting how inexpensive content marketing can be; 44% of respondents spend less than $300 per month on marketing their content.

2017 State of Digital Marketing

 

If you liked this infographic, you should follow us on Twitter @VeridayHQ. We share high-quality content like this infographic all the time. We’re always on the lookout for the latest trends in digital marketing, technology and increasing customer engagement and loyalty. Thanks for reading, have a great day!

How to Build Customer Loyalty in the Digital Age

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This post was authored by Matthew Draper and originally appeared here on Liferay.com

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The age of digital transformation has helped companies better understand and connect with their target audiences, with everything from dynamic content to page behavior insights helping to create a better picture of how individuals interact with companies. However, it has also greatly affected how loyal customers are to any given company.

Studies show that customers are more likely than ever to jump to competitors when they become dissatisfied with their current services, no matter how long they may have had a relationship with a company. Research from Vision Critical has found that 42 percent of Americans will stop shopping with a brand after only two bad experiences, making consistent high-quality customer experience critical in customer retention. While that lack of loyalty may mean ample opportunities for companies looking to expand their clientele, Harvard Business Review research shows that it costs approximately seven times more to gain a new customer than it does to retain one. As such, cultivating customer loyalty has both reputational and financial benefits.

But the question remains, how does a company improve customer loyalty in an age where loyalty is in short supply?

Encouraging Customer Loyalty Through Good Customer Experience

Changes in modern customer loyalty can be seen as an outcome of digital transformation, with more services than ever made convenient and easily accessible online. However, today’s customer often takes greater advantage of these online opportunities than the companies themselves, leading to today’s drop in customer loyalty. One of the largest factors in constantly shifting customer loyalty in the digital age is customer experience. Studies show that while pricing and quality of products may play a part in why a customer chooses one company over another, customer experience (CX) is the most important aspect in his or her choice.

The term customer experience can be applied to any interaction that a potential client has with your company, but there are several specific areas that can have the largest impact on loyalty. Brands can fight back against the waning tide of customer loyalty and its impact on client retention by improving the following areas of customer experience.

Ease of Access

Existing and potential clients should have the ability to quickly and completely reach your company’s services whenever and wherever they want. Today, customers expect to find and receive the online services they want without complications or delays. Without true brand loyalty, making your services easily accessible can make a major difference during a potential customer’s split-second choice between your company or a competitor.

Pre-existing loyalty may cause an existing client to go to you first, but not being able to quickly find/receive the services they want will easily send them to your competitor. Companies should consider how to implement omnichannel experiences in their services. In doing so, target audiences can smoothly and quickly interact online in both desktop and mobile, as well as in person, for a seamless experience that pushes them consistently and naturally toward closing a sale.

Supply Helpful Customer Service

The field of customer service is one of the most memorable interactions between your business and its customers. Customer service can include free shipping on items, customer loyalty rewards programs, return policies, promotional offers and customer support with issues concerning a product. According to research from Harris Interactive, 62% of U.S. consumers have switched brands in the past year due to a poor customer service experience. Good customer service not only reinforces to clients that your company cares about them, but prevents one of the biggest reasons for customer drop-off.

No matter the industry, customer service plays a crucial role in representing your brand in what are often the most decision-influencing interactions in any customer journey. Successfully demonstrating your dependability during these times can have a major positive effect on customer loyalty.

Distinguishing Your Brand Identity

Customers will tie your brand to the customer experience you provide. Should you offer a great experience, customers will attach positive feelings to your brand, but provide poor experiences and these failings will be tied to the brand instead. As such, it’s crucial that customer experiences align with your company’s larger goals so that good experiences not only gives clients a positive memory, but improve your brand’s standing in the public consciousness. For example, Amazon Dash buttons, which allow customers to reorder a product with the single push of a button, distinctly feature the brand of the company. In doing so, customers tie the brand to the simple, successful and satisfying experience they have had in using the button.

Forrester’s Customer Experience Index has found that a customer’s emotional connection with a brand has some of the strongest influence on loyalty. Cultivating that emotional connection and making it a positive one will yield short- and long-term loyalty in an age that has more competitors than ever before. In a sea of products and services from more brands than ever, having a positive emotional tie will help your brand distinguish itself from the crowd and feel less replaceable to clients.

6 Open Source Technologies That Changed The World

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When something is referred to as “open source”, it means that people can modify and share the code because its design is publicly accessible. Anybody can modify the code to suit their own needs. Open source technology has been around for quite some time now. In the early days of software development, code was shared among developers so they could learn from each other and advance the sector. As the industry began to become more commercialized and competitive, developers began to advocate the idea of free software. Some developers felt that software should be accessible to all, not restricted to those with deep pockets.

In 1997, Eric Raymond published a reflective analysis of the hacker community and free software principles. This lead to the Netscape Communicator internet suite becoming open source. Such a big player in software development joining the open source movement helped gain the idea traction. The fact that any developer can alter the software makes the systems more secure, affordable, transparent and flexible. The more diverse your development group is, the more innovation you can pack into a product. Open source software can be locally changed to save costs, making it very popular for many purposes. It is often used for local applications where only a specific task needs to be accomplished.

Overall, the world of software would be much different without open source software. Below we will take a look at 6 things that the world be missing if it wasn’t for the Open Source Initiative.

1. Linux

Linux is significant to the open source community thanks to its early adoption and use in creating (and running) much of the modern internet. It is an operating system built in 1991, by Linus Torvalds, a Finnish student at the time. His goal was to create an operating system that takes into account user feedback into its development cycle. It was based off Unix, an open source system. While I don’t want to get into the history of developing these systems, simply due to the amount of technical knowledge included, the subject is very interesting. For a very (very, very, very) thorough explanation check out The Linux Documentation Project.

Today, Linux is one of the most popular operating systems in the entire world. Around 98% of the world’s fastest supercomputers are Linux based. As seen in the chart below, 68% of tablets and mobile operating systems are Linux based.

Open Source technology dominates the mobile OS market

Worldwide Mobile OS Market Share

By W3Cook’s analysis of Alexa’s data, 96.3 percent of the top 1 million web servers are running Linux. The remainder is split between Windows ( 1.9 percent) and FreeBSD (1.8 percent).

Without Linux, it is nearly impossible to imagine where the world would be in terms of computing ability today. Web search would not exist and, the usefulness of the internet could be diminished greatly. The stability, standardization and security, all at a low cost, is the reason the OS has survived and thrived. These features would not be available if not for the open source origins of Linux.

2. Android

84.82% of smartphones worldwide run on the Android operating system. It has been growing exponentially since 2009, back when it only had 3.9% of the smartphone OS market. One of the reasons that Android is so popular is due to the open-source nature of the software. Google, Android’s parent company, makes deals to provide the software to hardware vendors for use with their devices. This opens access to Google services and marketplace to those using the devices.

Open source dominates Smartphone OS market

Smartphone OS Market Share

This strategy is completely opposite to that of their biggest competitor, Apple. Apple only puts iOS on Apple products. iOS is a closed-source system. Since it is restricted to Apple products, the adoption rate of the iOS is limited simply due to market constraints.

The open-source initiative that Android is based on has allowed the operating system to thrive in a competitive smartphone market. Google has become a major player in the smartphone environment, in less than a decade, due to their excellent implementation of open-source fundamentals. Without open source software, the smartphone market would look very different today.

3. Geographical Information Systems (GIS)

A Geographical Information System (GIS), is a computer system used to capture, store and analyze geographical and location-based data. GIS allows researchers to recognize patterns and relationships in geographic data. They are commonly used in industries that involve natural resources such as forestry, oil & gas, water management and in a variety of transportation-heavy sectors. GIS, when used in conjunction with GPS and logistics control solutions can help businesses become more efficient.

While not every GIS solution is open source, many of the early pioneers in the technology were proponents of free software. The original GIS solution MOSS (Map Overlay and Statistical System) was developed by the U.S. Department of Interior in 1978. Nearly all systems built since then, from GPS to location services, have built on the original open source solutions. Without these open source fundamentals, a large number of logistics control systems and location-based services would either not exist or still be in their infancy.

4. WordPress

WordPress, one of the world’s most popular blogging and web content management systems, is based on open source fundamentals. Without the Open Source Initiative, the software script that supports 27% of the web would not exist. The fact that WordPress is open sourced means that anyone can alter the code or create plugins. There are over 30,000 of these plugins, which add additional functionality to the website or blog. The plugins are responsible for things such as SEO, security, analytics and e-commerce functionality. All of these plugins are open source as well. Without the Open Source Initiative, one of the most functional CMSs in the world would not exist.

5. Firefox

Without Firefox, the browser market would be extremely different. Instead of a relatively competitive four solution battle, it would be reduced to three. Once you factor in that Safari is only available to Apple users, that becomes a two solution battle. You would have to pick between two technology giants, Google (with Chrome) or Microsoft (with Internet Explorer). The fact that there is a third option (for non-Apple users) completely changes the market. It forces the proprietary systems to be continually improved upon, or risk losing market share. Open source technologies like Firefox push innovation.

6. Liferay

Liferay Inc. is a technology company that is based on open source fundamentals. Their platforms are all offered in an open source format. The platform allows you to change the software so it can meet your specific needs. Liferay 7 is an open source version of their newest platform, Liferay DXP. The only differences between the open source version and the enterprise version is the level of support provided by the company.

Without Liferay, many corporate intranets and extranets, as well as a variety of portals would not exist. Costs associated with proprietary, black box systems would discourage many companies from adopting a portal, intranet or extranet. Liferay can provide a cost-effective solution that developers KNOW will work, simply based off being able to dive into the code.

The foundations of Liferay were developed over the years by a variety of developers. These efforts lead to the creation of various features of Liferay products, the system would not be the same (if it even existed) without the Open Source Initiative.

Conclusion

Without these technologies and platforms, the world would be an extremely different place. While there are closed source alternatives available for some of these technologies, the entire landscape would be completely shifted if open source software was not a thing.

The world would be a very different place if it was not for open source technology. Everyone would be using an iPhone, or maybe Blackberry would never have taken a tumble in market share. Internet Explorer and Chrome would be the two dominate web-browsers, never facing any external competition for non-Apple users. The internet would be dramatically altered because there would be no Linux or WordPress. Finally, we would not have any of the Liferay solutions. The world would be lacking top-of-the-line portal, intranet, and extranet solutions.

Open source technology has dramatically altered the world around us, nearly everything would be different. We would have no search engines, and the functionality of the internet would be significantly different. Proprietary solutions would be the only options, restricting who can even afford to use their technologies due to price. I for one, am thankful for the Open Source Initiative.

What did you think of our list? Would you have changed anything? Did we miss any big-name open source technologies? Let us know on Twitter @VeridayHQ. #OpenSource