lock-in
n. A state in which excessive costs associated with replacing existing systems prevent a company from switching technologies.

Example Citation:
"The really important investments are data and the time and effort spent learning how to use new systems. Protecting those investments explains why many companies stick with obsolete, inefficient computer systems. The cost of converting to new technologies and retraining workers outweighs the benefits—or seems to. That extra cost...is called lock-in."
—John Browning and Spencer Reiss, "Encyclopedia of the New Economy," Wired

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