Service Innovation: The Next Big Thing

IBM, Oracle, and other tech companies have formed a new nonprofit consortium dedicated to the advancement of this hot concept

When most consumers and corporations think of innovation, sleek, user-friendly products such as Apple's (AAPL) iPod come to mind. But leading companies, innovation consultants, and academic researchers are shifting their focus from products to services as the next hot area. The Mar. 28 launch of the Service Research & Innovation (SRI) Initiative, an ambitious Silicon Valley nonprofit founded by executives at IBM (IBM) and Oracle (ORCL), is a sign that the concept of service innovation is quickly becoming top-of-mind, at least among executives at high-profile companies in the technology industry.

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