It’s that time of year again. Hallowe’en, spooky goings-on and strange events. Here in the UK we build bonfires and celebrate, on November 5, the efforts of a man who tried to blow up our Parliament and wipe out the Government of the day. In fairness, historians would point out that what we celebrate is the failure of Guy Fawkes and his half-baked scheme.
So this year, I thought that I would really get into the spirit of things and also celebrate failure. I’m building my own personal bonfire, and rather than place an effigy of a Guy Fawkes at the top, I’m putting a copy of Gartner’s latest, half-baked IRCM Magic Quadrant.
For me, the annual publication of Gartner’s confusing and strangely bent out-of-shape view of the world I work in is just another example of the weird and unexplainable. For example, in Gartner’s view of the world, China – the largest mobile market in the world – doesn’t seem to matter. How else do you explain that the company with by far the largest share of the world’s largest market is ranked as a niche player?
Last week, I took to the airwaves and vented about Gartner as a guest on the very entertaining Week-In-Wireless podcast produced by the team at Telecoms.com. I’m not sure how much I added to the entertainment, but Tim and the team on the show seemed to enjoy what they termed my Magic Quad-Rant. You can listen to it here.
As well as listening, I also invite you to play a game with me – it’s a simple game of choice (though maybe chance would be a better word):
- IRCM revenues grow by 14.8 per cent to $775m
- Successfully delivers one of Europe’s largest BSS transformation projects
- Maintains 56 per cent IRCM share of the world’s largest market
- IRCM revenues fall by 4.5 per cent to $21m
- Gartner warns: “Large projects may pose challenges for resources and product scalability”
- “Has a limited software partner ecosystem”
The two companies are rated equally by Gartner in terms of their ability to execute (no really, they are) but the question to answer is which of those two companies was deemed to have improved exponentially in the year and which to have gone downhill by the same factor?
Award yourself two hallucinatory Magic Quadrant beans if you answered that B has improved. In Gartner’s view of the world, company A, serving more than 1.2 billion end user accounts worldwide, working with four of the world’s largest operator groups, and with impressive revenue growth in the year under review went backwards and is now viewed as a “niche player.”
Well, all I can say is: “Have you seen the size of our Niche?”
Ultimately Guy Fawkes and his plotters failed in their purpose because some of those “in” on the scheme, warned some of their friends not “in” on it, to stay clear of Parliament at this time of year. There might be a lesson there for some of us.
So this year, when I watch the MQ go up in flames on my bonfire this weekend, I think I’ll recite my own new version of the Guy Fawkes nursery rhyme of my youth:
Remember Remember, the 5th of November, Gartner’s lost the plot
We see the reason, in Gartner’s treason, cos China’s been forgot.