What Is Feasibility - Another Core Component In The Journey From Idea To Solution?

Last week I wrote about viability. Today we focus on the support ecosystem and infrastructure, and talk about Feasibility.

Feasibility focuses on the supporting eco-system and infrastructure, to determine whether or not the right conditions exist for our product/solution to be deployed and used effectively. Typical questions we answer here include ‘is this right infrastructure available?’, ‘if not, is our product/solution disruptive enough to push for the infrastructure to be created?’, ‘will the lack of supporting infrastructure put people off using our product/solution?’

For the idea to succeed as a product or solution and become an innovation, it will have to be utilised as intended by the target audience identified in the desirability stage. Quite often it will require external enablers such as support infrastructure and an eco-system.

For example, when the Internal Combustion engine was invented, and motor cars were developed on that basis, the support infrastructure required was availability of fuel to power the engines.

Similarly, when the electric bulb was invented, a prerequisite would have been the availability of electricity, without which, the bulb would be useless.

Now, the other possibility is that if the supporting infrastructure or ecosystem doesn’t yet exist, the product/solution must be impactful enough to enable the creation of such an ecosystem.

Steve Jobs’ showmanship is well documented on the Internet. Who doesn’t remember his keynote, back in 2007, when Apple launched the first ever iPhone? If you look it up on Google or YouTube, you’ll see a clip of this recording in which he presents ‘an iPod, a phone and an internet communication device’. Do you remember the state of mobile internet in 2007? Now, what happened in the aftermath of the iPhone launch? Two things happened:

  1. Touch screen smartphones started appearing rapidly.
  2. Mobile Internet became more and more powerful.
  3. There was extensive adoption of the mobile platform by major service providers (banks, retailers, restaurants) and social media, and the race began!

So, the point I am making here is, if a support infrastructure and an eco-system don’t exist, your product/solution has to have so much of an impact that it does what iPhone did to the Internet and mobile communications.

As a summary, feasibility assessment of the idea is about ensuring your idea has support infrastructure and an eco-system to enable rapid adoption at scale or that your idea has so much of an impact, it triggers the generation of this infrastructure and eco-system.