“What we have now in consumer tech, in 2017, is an oligopoly, at least superficially similar to the old industrial-era American corporate groups that once dominated key industries,” Walt Mossberg writes for The Verge.

“To be clear, I’m not alleging that the Gang of Five [Apple, Amazon, Google, Facebook, and Microsoft] is colluding with each other to fix prices, or to actively suppress innovation; or to do anything illegal,” Mossberg writes. “But I do think that their enduring and growing power casts a shadow over the Silicon Valley legend that there are lots of great new consumer tech innovations being incubated right now in garages or dorm rooms somewhere that will be taken all the way to becoming great companies, the way each of the Gang of Five was.”

“What I fear is more likely to happen to any such startup is that, if they’re good, they get acquired by a member of the Gang, or that their idea is turned into a feature for one of the Gang’s products,” Mossberg writes. “I’m a fan of all the Gang members.. [but] ultimately, I don’t think even a five-company platform oligopoly is good for consumer tech. By its very nature, it handicaps independent companies with new ideas. But it will end one day.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Yes, it will end someday. In fact, for Microsoft, it effectively already has. For Facebook, it could end in a flash (sort of like Flash) at any time. But the true “Big Three” — Apple, Google, and Amazon — will be here, dominating markets far and wide for many, many years – save for government intervention at some point for any or all of them.