Did You Know?
Silicon Valley was named after Intel, the first silicon chip manufacturer in the world.
Silicon Valley is home to the biggest IT companies in the world. Many start-up companies had their paltry beginnings there, and went on to become leaders in the respective areas. The names Microsoft, Apple, and Google come to mind, and rank among the most successful ones. People think all entrepreneurs chose this place to become the next IT hub. But in reality, it was chosen for the proximity to the city of San Francisco, and for the cheap rent prevalent at the time. The reason it is a buzzing place now is due to the tech culture imbibed in it for years.
Another reason that people were attracted to this place was the amount of talent allowed to grow in such a small place. Hiring a star programmer lured more programmers to work in the same company. At present, real estate prices have shot up in Silicon Valley, which has spiked rental rates in the surrounding neighborhoods. If you feel the need to explore a different city, here's a list of cities that have been touted to become the next Silicon Valley.
Alternatives to Silicon Valley
Seattle is a quiet port city in the state of Washington. Mostly known for the logging industry, this sleepy town opened its arms to the technology industry, with major names like T-Mobile, Microsoft, and Amazon settling down in the area. A long time since America Online (AOL) started out here, this city could well be the next big thing. It already attracts entrepreneurs from military and government sectors, but who said there isn't room for more?
Austin, the capital of Texas, and forever romanticized as the hometown of cowboys, has reemerged as a technological hub for companies such as Advanced Micro Devices, Apple Inc., Cisco, Dell, eBay, Google, IBM, Intel, Texas Instruments, 3M, Oracle Corporation, Flextronics, and Samsung, just to name a few. It is one of the fastest growing cities around, and the low cost of living has attracted real estate developers, making it the next destination for IT companies.
Miami, known for its beaches and sunny weather, regained itself from the recession in 2008 to be a hotspot for IT companies. In 2014, venture capitalists brought in $49.4 million and increased the employment rate by 2.9%. Latin-American companies are setting up branches in Miami to get a foothold in the US market, one of them being .CO Internet.
Detroit, the Motor City, known for creating the best automobiles in the world, is emerging as a favorable city for IT companies. From small start-ups like Detroit Labs, and biggies like Google deciding to open their branches here to capitalize on the cheap rent and centralization of the city, it has also encouraged General Motors to push into the software industry.
Chicago is a haven for tech companies such as Red Box, Motorola, Career Builder, Orbit, Groupon, and 29 other venture capital funded companies. The city is trying to attract more investors by building 1871, a IT park with a 50,000 square feet area which can house up to 100 start-ups. With low real estate prices and high paying tech jobs, this Windy City could be the next big stop as far as the IT industry is concerned.
Located on the river Thames, London is a metropolis home to the best universities in the world, such as Oxford and Cambridge. It also caters to a young crowd, and many US investors tend to invest in the UK due to its proximity to the Asian market. One of the most valued companies that has made London its home is King Digital Entertainment, creators of Candy Crush.
New York City, New York
Aptly called the 'Big Apple', it has always attracted talent and companies from around the world. Major television networks like NBC, CBS, etc., call it home. The city has always focused on creating a hospitable environment for the companies, with Buzzfeed getting a $4 million tax credit just for staying in the city. It had venture capital funding of $1.7 billion in the year 2014.
Portland is the largest city in Oregon, and has an industrial region nicknamed the Silicon Forest for the number of tech start-ups that have sprung in the city. Other big companies that reside here are Intel, Planar, Xerox, and Hewlett-Packard, with Google confirmed to set up shop here in an office downtown.
Some other cities that have garnered interest in becoming the next Silicon Valley include Dallas, Boston, Salt Lake City, and Yachay in Ecuador.