Definition: FUD factor
(Fear Uncertainty Doubt factor) A marketing strategy used by a dominant or privileged organization that restrains competition by introducing suspicion and uncertainty into the marketplace. It is often done by keeping future plans secret and letting the rumor mill take over.
Another approach is to publicly change plans frequently and present a moving target for competitors. This keeps customers from purchasing third-party products for fear they will not interface with the new hardware or software coming from their existing vendor.
Even when FUD is not the intent, what may appear as a strategy is often nothing more than one department not talking to another inside today's gigantic tech empires. Coordinating ever-changing new features and product names with the sales, marketing and advertising departments is not trivial, and no matter how hard they try, companies unintentionally slip up.