This week we saw Google move from taking a bite out of Microsoft’s pie to their first all-out attempt at devouring it whole. What we’re talking about, of course, is the Google Apps Migration for Microsoft Exchange tool.
If this is how we’re fighting now, then, well: Things just. Got. Interesting.
You Say You Want a Revolution…
We’re not gonna lie, folks. The battle field is ugly. Many of those in favor of Google are keen on proclaiming their love for the openness of the cloud, and shutting down anything that doesn’t follow that strategy.
For example, earlier this month Zoho’s CEO Sridhar Vembu spoke to his decision to stick his company’s CRM system in the Google Marketplace. In the manifesto his belief in the future of e-mail and contextual integration within the enterprise—and Google’s way of handling both—was borderline devout. Meanwhile, his opinion of Salesforce.com’s technique was, well, not:
“…to be a real platform, you have to have a degree of openness, and our experience with Salesforce demonstrates the opposite, and sets up a direct contrast to Google's platform approach.”
Meanwhile, some of Microsoft’s fankids argue that Google Apps is like child’s play when it comes to business productivity. After all, Microsoft offers different solutions for different needs (MOSS, WSS, SharePoint) while Google houses everything together.
E-Tantrums and pixelated tears have been especially prevalent at the mention of Google’s pricing structure, which requires individuals to purchase additional space once they exceed the single freebie gigabyte that Google provides. In contrast, Microsoft offers 25GB for free that integrates with their Online Office.
We All Want to Change the World
This debate is nothing new, of course. These two giants have gone head to head in battle over several areas of tech, including internet search, operating systems, enterprise applications and browsers.
"Both [companies] are looking for dominant positions in the Internet,” said In-Stat analyst Jim McGregor late last year. “For Google to increase its business, it needs to move into other territory. For Microsoft to have significant growth opportunities, it needs to become an Internet powerhouse, and they know it. This is not a war that is going to be won by one or two battles. This is going to be a prolonged activity."
Google’s certainly expanding into other territories with the new marketplace. Is Microsoft meeting the needs of its users as well?
Don’t You Know It’s Gonna Be All Right
However this battle goes down, we know one thing for certain: It sure is gonna be fun to watch. And, all things considered--even the migration tool--it's obviously far from over. Stick with us as the headlines change; nothing in the enterprise is ever boring these days:
Microsoft Unveils a User Experience Kit
At this year's SXSW conference, Microsoft unveiled a User Experience kit. The kit helps both technical and creative leads make sense of the Microsoft technology stack by providing videos, reference implementations, sample code, live demos, installable tools, whitepapers, pattern libraries, etc.
Enterprise Software: To Be or Not To Be Like Facebook
Yet another heated battle. On one side of the field we have Marc Benioff, chairman and CEO of Salesforce.com. His argument is that enterprise software should be more like Facebook. On the other side, a crowd of naysayers who don’t like the idea of mixing business with pleasure.
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