The Customers of 2026 - Come on Down!
The biggest digital-first success stories have in many cases provided mass scale arbitrage, stepping between the end customer and the originating supplier (Google, eBay, Alibaba, Uber, Airbnb, Amazon, etc). Direct businesses have just got better at being direct, customers become suppliers, opportunities to exploit the work of others increasingly open up (eg drop shipping). Is this the way it's always going to be? Are the digital customers of tomorrow going to continue to turn to the "middle-people" of the web in such droves? Or will digital (r)evolve again and break the marketplace empires?