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Box Now Supports Video: Further Evidence Of The Commoditisation Of DAM?

by Naresh Sarwan on September 1, 2011 recently blogged that they are now supporting video uploads with what appears to be automated transcoding also to generate proxies that can be viewed via a browser.  That announcement in itself is nothing special, however, I believe it  indicates evidence of a trend towards the commoditisation of DAM technologies which we have been observing for some time:

One of my favorite things about Box is being able to preview my content right in my browser – it saves me a ton of time when I’m looking for the right file, or even when I want to look at a presentation without downloading anything. You can already preview more than 35 different file types on Box, and our goal is to make that number as big as possible.  That’s why I’m excited to introduce a major addition to our previewing feature –enterprise customers can now view videos right in their account. Just upload any avi, mov, mp4, mpg, mpeg, wmv, qt, ra, or ram file to Box and we’ll convert for seamless playback through the Box web application.” [Read More]

The marketing material is starting to read like a DAM vendor product brochure from 2007 or 2008.  Definitely not serious enough to replace mid-market or high end solutions in 2011, but getting close to being ‘good enough’ for many prospective purchasers.  Last year we analysed a poll where they discovered that 50% of those surveyed did not have a DAM system.  The question is, will that 50% hold out for low-end providers like to catch up with their requirements or can vendors provide a compelling enough case to justify an investment into a more expansive solution for those that have not committed yet?

For an interesting additional perspective on these trends, I also note this article which appeared in Fierce Content Management on Tuesday also (coincidentally the same day as the blog entry):

By 2005-2007, however, WCM products had reached full maturity, and they began to experience the effects of commoditization. In about 2007, we began to see a bifurcation in the WCM market. There was downward pricing pressure on pure-play WCM vendors, and products which had been selling relatively well at the $70k-80k price range began to be so discounted heavily so that they were actually selling in the $40-50k price range.” [Read More]

Perhaps the WCM market might offer some pointers to those DAM vendors looking to differentiate from the vast number of alternatives now available?   Based on the FCM article though, it seems many are eyeing traditional DAM purchasers such as marketing departments with interest also.  It seems likely that in 2012 and beyond, there are two choices for DAM vendors: be bigger than everyone else (in terms of users) or offer something completely unique.  The digital asset management sector is evidently now maturing at a rapid pace.

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