Is Openness Really Free? A Critical Analysis of Switching Costs for Industrial Internet Platforms

Karan Menon, Hannu Kärkkäinen, Timo Seppälä, Thorsten Wuest

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterScientificpeer-review


The core idea of Industrial Internet, Industry 4.0, Smart Manufacturing and Cyber Physical Systems (CPS) is to utilize Internet of Things (IoT) based technologies and applications for the purpose of enhanced operations productivity. These IoT technologies and applications help companies to integrate their business as well as their engineering, manufacturing and service processes making their operations more robust, efficient and sustainable (green) with supreme quality. Switching cost and openness of the industrial internet (II) platform has many short and long-term impacts on the end-users’ business. Hence the openness is often considered to be free or synonymous to open source. The purpose of this paper is to understand and analyze the impact of II-platform’s increased openness and its dimensions on switching costs framework. For empirics and to test the developed framework we conducted a training and a workshop, where 11 manufacturing and service industry representatives describe the main types of switching costs that would be impacted because of increased openness of II-platforms. As a managerial implication this new switching cost framework seem to provide a tool to evaluate the specific preferences and potential positive and negative impacts of II openness on their respective businesses.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProduct Lifecycle Management to Support Industry 4.0. PLM 2018. IFIP Advances in Information and Communication Technology
EditorsP Chiabert, A Bouras, F Noel, J Rios
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-030-01614-2
Publication statusPublished - 14 Dec 2018
MoE publication typeA3 Part of a book or another research book

Publication series

Name IFIP Advances in Information and Communication Technology


  • Industry 4.0
  • Industrial Internet
  • Smart Manufacturing
  • Platforms
  • Openness
  • Switching costs
  • lock-in
  • IIoT
  • IoT

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