In Pictures: When tech empires fall - 10 companies and products that dominated... and then didn't

These tech giants had a valuable market locked down. Then they screwed up.

In Pictures: When tech empires fall - 10 companies and products that dominated... and then didn't prev next

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IBM PC In 1981, IBM jumped into the burgeoning microcomputer market with the PC, and found success beyond even what the company's own executives expected; by 1983, they had grabbed a quarter of the market and were beating Apple handily. But the seeds of the PC's defeat were part of its very design: To get it to market quickly, IBM had built it almost entirely out of off-the-shelf parts; its only proprietary aspect, its BIOS, was easily reverse-engineered by rivals who soon began peddling PC clones. The company was full of hubris before the release of the PCjr, but that machine's lack of full PC compatibility showed IBM's misunderstanding of the very market it had created.

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In Pictures: When tech empires fall - 10 companies and products that dominated... and then didn't

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