Jose de Francisco Lopez, co-founder of Consultaglobal.com, a research and management consulting firm focused on innovation practices, offers a framework for understanding different types of innovation. (It’s worth checking out the blog link to see his diagram.) Along the way, he tries to define various types of innovation, including disruptive, transformational, incremental and gradual innovation. Some of the definitions are stronger than others. Below — with some editing and paraphrasing (by me) — is his definition of disruptive innovation. See what you think.
Disruptive innovation: Technical or business breakthroughs that “change the rules of the game,” involve a relatively fast rollout and leapfrog established vendors. A successful disruptive innovation drives the market to a point of no return: creating new value, and rendering former solutions obsolete.