Lock-In Sucks. If You Create a Walled Garden, are You Really Putting the Customer First?

Over the past decade and a half, consumers have increasingly encountered providers who have created a walled garden when it comes to their product. A number of items you use on a daily basis fit this description, be it your phone and the hardware needed to accomplish a simple task like charging, or perhaps you’re a cyclist who just purchased a new mountain bike. If you wish to upgrade parts, good luck finding something that will work if it’s made by a different brand.

Cloud and Edge compute companies are no different. More often than not, a provider for web hosting services, container orchestration, or even those who proclaim to be multi-cloud, will require that you reconfigure or rewrite your app so that it will function properly with their platform. Once you do this and deploy, it becomes increasingly difficult, expensive, and sometimes impossible to move away regardless of performance. In the immortal words of one of the great Star Wars characters, General Ackbar, “It’s a trap.” You probably know it as “lock-in.”

I’ve been fortunate to work with a number of entrepreneurs over the course of my career. At least some of them might admire the “trap” to which General Ackbar refers when viewed through a capitalist lens. If you create a walled garden and capture those who enter, you can spend less on customer happiness while investing more in raising the walls.

But something about that doesn’t feel right. While I am an entrepreneur at heart, and a capitalist, I’ve always believed there is a better way to build a company around what serves customers’ needs, rather than just the bottom line.

Imagine my enthusiasm when I first began working with Section and learned of our founders’ vision. CEO, Stewart McGrath and CTO, Daniel Bartholomew, would not be well-fitted for The Empire. Their vision of Edge-Compute and Multi-Cloud is centered around a garden without walls, where customers can leverage any number of different cloud and infrastructure providers without the hassle and shackles associated with “lock-in.” Simply put, they’re part of a different cinematic universe. They’re much more like Tron: “I fight for the users.”

Dan and Stew built Section without trying to “trap” anyone. Since the beginning, their focus has been to create a platform that serves devs and engineers in a way that allows them to build whatever they choose.

Does this make things more difficult for Section? Not necessarily. It simply means we’re different. We hold ourselves to the highest standard when it comes to our customers’ experience. Be it the platform itself, customer support, or our focus on ensuring that users achieve whatever they envision, we’ve simply invested more. Why? Because we are devs and engineers. We know what this community needs and deserves.

Welcoming everyone into a garden without walls may not be the easiest route, but if it means tech creators have the ability to build what they’ve envisioned without constraint, the time and effort is beyond worth it. Give Section a try for free, and see what you can create.

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