Microsoft today announced the worldwide availability of Microsoft Online Services. Some highlights from the press release :
… Furthering its commitment to deliver communications and collaboration software as enterprise-class services, today at CeBIT 2009 Microsoft Corp. announced that the Business Productivity Online Suite, part of Microsoft Online Services, is now available for trial to businesses of all sizes in 19 countries. In addition, Microsoft will release Microsoft Office Communications Online, for instant messaging and presence, and the Business Productivity Online Deskless Worker Suite, an extremely economical e-mail, calendaring and collaboration service for the occasional user.
“These services open up new possibilities for businesses to control costs while continuing to enhance the productivity of their employees,” said Stephen Elop, president of the Microsoft Business Division. “Customers can save between 10 percent and 50 percent in IT-related expenditures as a result of deploying Microsoft Online Services.”
Software-Plus-Services Strategy Reaches Worldwide
Exchange Online and SharePoint Online are available for trial in Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the United States. Organizations worldwide will be able to trial and purchase the entire Business Productivity Online Suite, including Office Communications Online, in April.
In addition, Microsoft is committed to providing opportunity for a global ecosystem of partners that will sell, customize and provide consulting, migration and managed services for Microsoft Online Services customers around the world.
Solutions for Occasional Users
The Deskless Worker Suite, including Exchange Online Deskless Worker and SharePoint Online Deskless Worker, will also be available to organizations in the 19 countries. The Deskless Worker Suite is a low-cost solution designed for users who don’t have access to messaging and collaboration capabilities today.
The worldwide availability of the Deskless Worker Suite will offer customers an affordable e-mail and collaboration solution for occasional users. By providing a cost-effective subscription rate (currently listed at 2.56 euros or 2.01 pounds per month per user), the Deskless Worker Suite will make it possible for organizations to give all employees access to the same messaging and collaboration systems. Today, in organizations that have deployed e-mail, more than 40 percent of employees do not have e-mail.*
The Deskless Worker Suite will be available for trial and for purchase worldwide in April.
Global Customer Adoption
A growing number of companies across the globe, from small businesses to large enterprises, are already adopting Microsoft Online Services, which were first released in the U.S. last fall. Today, Microsoft announced that pharmaceutical multinational GlaxoSmithKline will deploy the Business Productivity Online Suite, including Exchange Online, SharePoint Online, Office Communications Online, Office Live Meeting and the Deskless Worker Suite, to its employees worldwide.
“GlaxoSmithKline has more than 100,000 employees, hundreds of business partners, and locations around the world, so effective collaboration is critical to our business,” said Bill Louv, chief information officer, GlaxoSmithKline. “We have chosen Microsoft Online Services because it promises to deliver a simple intuitive Information Workplace that should not only value to the company through simplification, but provide an improved user experience and ultimately create a more productive GSK.”
“The move to Microsoft Online Services will help GlaxoSmithKline cut operational costs by an estimated 30 percent and create a variable cost model that will provide increased flexibility in the future,” said Ingo Elfering, vice president of Information Technology Strategy, GlaxoSmithKline.
An executive Q&A video with GlaxoSmithKline’s CIO is available at http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/presskits/Officesoftwareplusservices/default.mspx.
A GlaxoSmithKline executive blog is available on the Microsoft Online Services team blog at http://blogs.technet.com/msonline/default.aspx.
Worldwide Pricing Model
Worldwide pricing for Microsoft Online Services is flexible and predictable. Businesses will have the option to subscribe to Exchange Online, SharePoint Online, Office Communications Online and Office Live Meeting individually or together as a suite. The Business Productivity Online Suite is currently listed at 12.78 euros or 10.04 pounds per month per user, which offers businesses a 38 percent discount, compared with subscribing separately to the individual services.
Additional information on Microsoft Online Services is available at http://www.microsoft.com/online.