The difference is confidenceIn retrospect, the United States could wield massive influence on information technology around the world based on an operating system and thanks to the support of government employees in charge of providing research assistance to universities for two decades, the first 10 years on developing the computer and the second on the Internet. Until original technologies were developed, the government provided constant and focused assistance to a handful of university research teams.
The U.S. government didn’t stop there. In fact, the software products developed by the universities were mostly prototypes, but the government continued to assist in the course of developing and commercializing the products to be presented to the market.
Soon, Google is likely to top the market capitalization over Apple. In the mobile era, smartphones were highlighted, and soon, the glory moved onto the operating system. It is well known that before Google acquired the Android operating system, the Android developers talked with Samsung. Why did Samsung so simply turn down the deal? At the time, Samsung was not confident to acquire and manage Android.
Upon acquisition, Google successfully turned Android into an operating system giant. How could Google succeed when it didn’t have anyone to oversee Android, just like Samsung? The difference is confidence. Confidence sets Samsung and Google apart. Where does confidence come from? It came from the support of the U.S. government. We need to realize what the government can do beyond the work of the private sector.
What is the Korean government doing now? It only proposes conceptual ideas like the “creative economy” and is waiting with folded arms until companies come up with new products. It is already too late, but if the government fails to offer the support that the U.S. government provided to its companies from now on, we would regret 10 years from now that we have failed to develop a future business.
By Moon Song-chun, Professor at Kaist College of Business