Posted on September 22, 2017
Today’s headline-grabbing businesses have a whole new image compared to those that came before them. The tech giants, in particular, seem less like cut-throat Wall Street types and more like playfully competitive geeks.
The underlying theme, though, remains the same: the girls and boys of Facebook, Microsoft, Snapchat, and Google want to be the best they can and leave the competition in the dust.
This got us thinking about sports analogies, and soccer in particular—a money game of invention, strength, and strategy. What would the tech giants look like if they each were to field a soccer team in a dotcom World Cup?
Bill Gates may be the Bill Shankly of the tech world, but Microsoft is not known for its stylish aesthetics. No through-and-through Liverpool red for Microsoft F.C. Instead. they wear a strip combining all the colors of the Windows logo; it would make Jorge Campos blush.
But are they any good? From goalkeeper to attack, Microsoft’s players cover the basics reliably and without frills. Other teams may imitate Microsoft’s best players, but the real fans know who had the originals.
While some will accuse Apple’s imaginary soccer squad of style over substance, it’s undeniable that they get results.
The minimalist design of the Apple brand is reflected in their aluminum-grey kits with sleek, lightweight lining, which allow Apple’s players a pace and versatility that rival teams can only gawk at.
Don’t get too attached to your favorite players, though—just when you think you've worked out who Apple's mainstays are, the company will replace ’em with the new model.
Snapchat are the young, hot players who every other team wants a piece off.
They have talent for ideas that other rivals just can’t seem get to work (think successful Snapchat vs the failed Facebook Poke). They start trends that everyone tries to copy (think Instagram Stories as an exact replica of Snapchat Stories).
In glowing, practically blinding, yellow, Snapchat’s not scared to stand amongst the longer-established giants, and welcomes some serious competition on the pitch.
Today’s tech giants are known for being disruptors, but few of the big boys have disrupted their industry as much as Netflix.
Dressed in a spicy, Bayern Munich shade of red, Netflix is sure to import some of the best big players for the contest—as well as some talented, home-grown hotshots.
One rule for the players if they want to remain competitive: no Netflix and chill the night before a big game!
Naturally, Facebook’s soccer team will play in blue—their skipper, Mark Zuckerberg, famously sees this color more clearly than others. And with a squad of 1.38 billion players to choose from, you could have faith that Facebook F.C. would turn out a high-quality eleven.
We reckon their team goals won’t quite match up to Facebook’s stock price, though; the problem is their players are always distracted. Never mind—it’s not how many goals you score that counts in life, it’s how many Likes you get. Right?
Google’s color scheme looks a whole lot like that of Microsoft—only with considerably more white. This minimalism is one of Google’s secrets to success, the other being their use of data. So their pared-back jersey design includes data-themed detail across the back and chest.
But might not that data hold a deeper secret still? Say, an algorithm by which Google’s self-driving players know just where each of their opponents is at any given point, what their tactics are, and the best route to the goalmouth?
With their power, reach, and top-secret, cutting-edge methods, you’d be naïve to bet against Google taking home the cup!
One day in the not-too-distant future, we may have robot football teams whose artificial intelligence and exquisitely articulated robo-limbs enable them to play matches of superior pace and sophistication.
In the meantime, regardless of how attractive or not today’s soccer kits may be, the sport remains perfect in its flaws and unpredictability. In short: the beautiful game!
Corbett, J. (2009). Bill Shankly: Life, death, and football. theguardian.com
Waluyo, D. (2016). The cult: George Campos. sports.vice.com
Widrich, L. (2013). Why Facebook is blue: The science of colors in marketing. blog.bufferapp.com
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