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The Ambivalent Characteristics of Connected, Digitised Products: Case Tesla Model S

Part of the Lecture Notes in Business Information Processing book series (LNBIP,volume 259)


Connected, digitised products are assemblages that comprise digital and physical components and are linked to digital support infrastructures. Given that re-programmability of digital components allows a product designer to adopt a design philosophy that embraces incompleteness and continuous improvement, digitised (tangible) products may also become incomplete and open-ended if such a philosophy is embraced. This research uses Tesla Model S as a case study to explore the mutability of a passenger car over time. The results show that a type of a product that has traditionally been seen as stable may become open-ended, incomplete and mutable in terms of its specifications and functionality. This brings forward the relevance of complementary architectural frames and principles to conceptualise differing design cycles among physical and digital components in innovation and product management while also showing blurring boundaries of control between the owner and the manufacturer of a product.


  • Connected
  • Digitised products
  • Hybrid materiality
  • Design cycles
  • Product lifecycle
  • Innovation management
  • Product management

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This research was supported by research student grants that were made available by the Emil Aaltonen foundation and the KAUTE foundation (the Finnish Science Foundation for Economics and Technology).

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Correspondence to Antti K. Lyyra .

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Lyyra, A.K., Koskinen, K.M. (2016). The Ambivalent Characteristics of Connected, Digitised Products: Case Tesla Model S. In: Lundh Snis, U. (eds) Nordic Contributions in IS Research. SCIS 2016. Lecture Notes in Business Information Processing, vol 259. Springer, Cham.

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