What Would It Take to Disrupt a Platform Like Facebook?

When Instagram demonstrated that sharing photos on mobile devices was a new social media platform, Facebook acquired it. When WhatsApp demonstrated that messaging was alive and well in a pure form, Facebook acquired it. In each case Facebook paid handsomely — but did little else. In effect, Facebook bought an option against possible disruption but did not want to touch or risk anything else about those companies. Facebook controls possible disruptive events that appear to pick off customers based on initially niche cases by buying the competition.

Source: Harvard Business Review