So what is going to bring SharePoint back to the business? Three things that everyone is talking about: cloud, social and mobile. But Forrester thinks Microsoft is in for a struggle to bring these things into the platform fast enough and well enough to make the business really get their money's worth.

  1. SharePoint in the Cloud: Microsoft has offered SharePoint Online first through BPOS and now through Office 365, but most orgs are still going with the on premises deployments. However, Office 365 is a good fit for those with low IT budgets and resources, those with only the basic requirements and those looking to quickly get an extranet up and running.
  2. Social SharePoint: Yammer appears to be the potential winning service here, but it's not tightly integrated yet, so we'll see exactly what it brings to the SharePoint table.
  3. Mobile: Microsoft supports its own mobile devices, but isn't so quick to support iOS and Android devices. There are, of course, third party apps out there that offer this, but its Microsoft's own support of the leading enterprise devices that still falls short.

All of these issues are recoverable and Microsoft has shown its desire to provide the necessary functionality that organizations are demanding (if not a little behind schedule). For those looking to take on Office 365, some concerns may get addressed much faster with the regular cycle of updates Microsoft is promising.

Forrester also says that Microsoft has been smart to open the SharePoint platform allowing for richer integrations from third party software as well as its own additional services (like Yammer).

Is SharePoint Domination At an End?

It always amazes me that we can hear so much disillusionment about a product that is still being rapidly deployed across organizations, one that includes a strong vibrant community ready to come to its aide. But it does seem that SharePoint is here for the long haul in some form or another.

Forrester points to two things Microsoft needs to nail for SharePoint to continue on its path of dominance: a better cloud story and stronger adoption. Both of these are crucial for any product/service today. There are a ton and more of options out there and we hear about them every day here at CMSWire. Can SharePoint succeed in a market that is changing as rapidly as this one? It will, the question is more where on the totem pole will it end up? Is SharePoint 2013 going to be the game changer? Or simply the fifth version of the platform?