How they do it: Apple has created an ecosystem of hardware and software combinations. For example can the native music app of the iPhone only be connected through the Apple software iTunes. This creates a lock-in effect, also when the user wants to synchronize other media across devices.
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How they do it: Gillette pioneered the system of single-use razorblades as consumables. By being the only manufacturer of razor blades compatible with its razors, customers have no choice but to buy Gilette’s razorblades once they own the razor.
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How they do it: By providing the most used operating system for personal computers, Microsoft has the advantage to create an environment which prefers their other software solutions such as Internet Explorer or the Office package over competing products. Also, the programs on a Microsoft operating system are ususally not compatible with other operating systems from companies such as Apple or Linux. Hence customers have a barrier to switch to another operating system as they would loose their software programs.
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How they do it: Lego parts allow individual recombination of the parts. However this recombination is only possible with other official Lego parts and no other toys. This leads to a lock-in for customers, as the size of an existing Lego collection determines also the value of new Lego products, as the recombination possibilities are increasing.
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How they do it: Once a customer owns a Nintendo console, the only games compatible are the ones licensed by Nintendo itself. This means that Nintendo generates additional revenue with every game sold. It is generally not possible to run 3rd party games on the console which are not certified by Nintendo.
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