… Deploying Google Apps could be a “career-limiting move for enterprise architects” if they expect too much from the software-as-a-service collaboration suite and its “rudimentary” feature set, the Burton Group research and consulting firm says in a new report. …
Google Apps is useful in a limited set of circumstances, the report says. Start-ups and other small businesses might want to use it as a basic office and collaboration suite. Google Apps can also be considered a point solution for businesses that need a “lite” collaboration or enterprise content-management application, or a rudimentary replacement of Microsoft Office for “non-power users” who need only basic e-mail, word processing, and spreadsheet capabilities.
Even at Google’s offices, Apps is used internally only as a collaboration add-on to Microsoft Office, the report says. …
… The 55-page report was released last week and is titled “Google Apps in the Enterprise: A Promotion-Enhancing or Career-Limiting Move for Enterprise Architects?”
Microsoft Office has a huge lead in features over Google Apps, the Burton Group says, giving these examples:
- Documents: “Google Docs does not support a table of contents, headers, footers, automatic creation of footnotes or end notes.”
- Spreadsheets: “Google Spreadsheets does not support some of the more esoteric functions within formulas (e.g., database functions), and cannot hide rows or columns.”
- Presentations: “Google does not yet offer a presentation application, although it is in the process of developing one.”
- Customized applications: “Using Visual Studio Tools for Office, developers can create customized business applications that leverage capabilities in Microsoft Word and Excel, for example. While the Google APIs offer some programmatic control, they do not offer the broad level of capabilities that Microsoft does.” …
This leaves little room for perception. Burton also indicates that without a doubt Google will “hit” Microsoft with this approach, but Microsoft will come out stronger with its Software ánd Services approach:
… The Burton Group predicts Microsoft will take a hit but come out stronger with its argument that software-as-a-service augments software rather than eliminating it.
“While Microsoft may take a perception hit from Google, especially in the [small and midsize business] market, in the short run, it will no doubt regroup and come out stronger in the end,” the Burton report says.
IBM, on the other hand, is looking weak, with a Lotus Notes strategy that hasn’t embraced software-as-a-service, the Burton Group says. Both IBM and Microsoft admitted to feeling heat from Google Apps during a panel discussion in June. An IBM executive noted the company has a partnership with Google but said IBM still expects the search giant to become a competitor in the corporate market in the future. …
“IBM, on the other hand, is looking weak, with a Lotus Notes strategy that hasn’t embraced software-as-a-service”.
This is very much true, although they have bought a Webconferecing solution now, the rest of Lotus Notes Domino is .. well … “just fine as a standalone offering”
Funny, IBM expects Google to become a competitor, HELLO … anybody home ?