The problem is that most corporations don't think long term anymore. To them "long term" means more than one business year.
New technology is very, very often founded by taxpayers in its initial stages. Then corporations pick it up and make it big and take the credit, but the fact is that they could start with a mature product instead of doing all the basic research themselves.
There are exceptions, but if you really go through the history of even recent inventions, you will be surprised at how often taxpayer money is involved in the early stages.
For my country, most of the current telecommunications stuff, TV and radio, a lof of transportation, thousands of small inventions in material sciences and engineering, alternative energy, almost everything in the aerospace industry, the early Internet and an endless list of other things would not have come to pass without the government funding at least parts of the early development, and often considerably more than that.
Basically, any technology that takes several years to mature and deploy as well as any that requires a considerably deployed base before economy of scale makes it profitable.