Where others fear to tread
So how is anyone going to make any money?
Matsumura segues masterfully to Chuck D of rap group Public Enemy who posted an entire album encoded in MP3 on the Internet last year. "They told him people are just going to download the music and take all the value for free. His reply was, 'They can't download me.'
"The fundamental truth is you can never copy and paste a human. The people who will generate value are the ones that create the value," he said.
Matsumura believed the real value in software will be in human creativity, and the people who will benefit directly are the individual creators and programmers. For it to really take off, though, requires a "solid transactional model" that can be built around the Internet.
In the ERP space, Matsumura estimated that BizTone has an 18-month lead time over the competition, although other companies like Intentia and PeopleSoft have Java-based solutions.
"It's a huge playing field with lots of players and the largest player in the global market for ERP is 'Other', with a one-third share," he said.
Matsumura said that despite the coming change, dominant ERP players like Germany's SAP and Holland's Baan may continue to service the largest companies because of their "addiction to big revenue and high margins".
"I believe the big boys can always see what is coming. Their problem is the ability to react. They may enter the lower strata of the market, but the majority of their revenue will still be at the top end," he said.
Matsumura does not believe that financial and marketing muscle as well as existing customer base are enough. "Even if the big boys see the problem and send the money, they're not done, and they're not out of the woods yet. They have fundamental and architectural issues they have to address. The nature of who they are makes it impossible for them to change and seize the new opportunity and let go of the existing one," he said.