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Google Challenging Microsoft For Business Software

Soulskill posted about a year and a half ago | from the if-you-come-at-the-king-you-best-not-miss dept.

Businesses 235

SternisheFan tips a report at the NY Times about the progress Google is making in its quest to unseat Microsoft's position atop the business software industry. From the article: It has taken years, but Google seems to be cutting into Microsoft's stronghold — businesses. ... In the last year Google has scored an impressive string of wins, including at the Swiss drug maker Hoffmann-La Roche, where over 80,000 employees use the package, and at the Interior Department, where 90,000 use it. One big reason is price. Google charges $50 a year for each person using its product, a price that has not changed since it made its commercial debut, even though Google has added features. In 2012, for example, Google added the ability to work on a computer not connected to the Internet, as well as security and data management that comply with more stringent European standards. That made it much easier to sell the product to multinationals and companies in Europe. ... Microsoft says it does not yet see a threat. Google 'has not yet shown they are truly serious,' said Julia White, a general manager in Microsoft’s business division. 'From the outside, they are an advertising company.'"

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235 comments

one of the biggest and most powerful companies... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42393387)

one of the biggest and most powerful companies in the world got owned by an advertising company. lol

Re: one of the biggest and most powerful companies (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42393449)

Microsoft says it does not yet see a threat.

Isn't this what happened to Microsoft in the mobile/phone/tablet space? Now they are playing catch-up to both Google and Apple. Complacency is a dangerous copilot.

Re: one of the biggest and most powerful companies (1, Interesting)

Deviate_X (578495) | about a year and a half ago | (#42393687)

Microsoft says it does not yet see a threat.

Isn't this what happened to Microsoft in the mobile/phone/tablet space? Now they are playing catch-up to both Google and Apple. Complacency is a dangerous copilot.

Google are a huge threat! Oglviy migrated all its users to "GMail", the employees really hate it vs proper exchange, outlook, office stack. But when a few massive companies like Oglviy migrate Google will improve to the point where they become more solid contenders.

The real threat is not Google ... (3, Informative)

Taco Cowboy (5327) | about a year and a half ago | (#42393825)

... but rather, walled garden and locked devices

Re: one of the biggest and most powerful companies (2, Insightful)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394081)

That's funny... I've never had gmail lock up... or tell me I had too much mail and I couldn't send until I deleted some... Outlook is a dinosaur and it's time for it to die.

Re: one of the biggest and most powerful companies (5, Informative)

jbolden (176878) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394163)

That's not Outlook, that's an Exchange setting. If you were using Outlook as your gmail client you wouldn't get that either.

Re: one of the biggest and most powerful companies (5, Interesting)

Lussarn (105276) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394687)

But still, there is a reason pretty much everybody I know use some kind of web based email, gmail probably being the most used. I don't think it's because they hate it. While I don't know how many uses Google docs, you have to be some kind of hardcore office nerd to really need something else.

Re: one of the biggest and most powerful companies (1)

E-Rock (84950) | about a year and a half ago | (#42395193)

It's not the e-mail part that is the problem with gmail at work, it's the calendar.

Re: one of the biggest and most powerful companies (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42394723)

I greatly prefer GMail over exchange/outlook. Centralizing email searches on a powerful server makes a lot of sense. My Outlook searches take forever in comparison to GMail.

Re: one of the biggest and most powerful companies (2)

howardd21 (1001567) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394905)

Not sure why that is the case, can you elaborate? I do Outlook searches in Windows 7 from the command text box on the Start menu, inside Outlook using the box above the inbox on Windows 8 (that is an area Microsoft failed in; the search from the OS does not include data inside of Outlook); and inside of Outlook on the mac. In every case it is less than a second and I have 9,000 emails on average in the inbox, and 20,000+ across all folders including an archive.pst file. What do you see?

Re: one of the biggest and most powerful companies (5, Interesting)

hairyfeet (841228) | about a year and a half ago | (#42393713)

Actually ironically Google is simply doing what MSFT did in the past, which was taking a market from morons. How did MS Office become dominant? Because Wordperfect was run by morons who thought that even though Windows was the dominant platform they could just sit on ass and repackage their DOS version and made a buggy POS that bombed. Same thing happened with IE and Netscape, Netscape put out the disaster that was NS 4 and gave MSFT a market by default, same again with Windows VS BeOS, which chose first a lame AT&T CPU that bombed, then the Motorola chip that was already fading before finally getting the sense too late to make an X86 version.

Now MSFT is being run by an absolute moron named Steve "What is Apple doing?" Ballmer who is about to make a move that will make the Osbourne effect or HP buying Palm look like minor boo boos. For those that don't know what I'm talking about look up "Windows Blue" where Ballmer laid out his "game plan" for MSFT past Win 8. in it he says Windows will get YEARLY releases (just like Apple) Microsoft will take over the production of hardware (just like Apple) stop selling to the low end (see a pattern here?) and tie every single thing to an appstore (Can Apple sue for plagiarism?) while making their own phones (ditto) laptops (uh huh) and desktops (Ray Charles could see through this plan) at high markups like they are doing with the surface, which they had to slash orders for in half because nobody is gonna pay $800 for a Windows device that won't run Windows programs.

So if the board doesn't stop smoking weed and wake the fuck up but quick I predict in 5 years we are gonna see the low end and a HELL of a lot of the businesses move to Google, after all Android has tons of apps and Google has already said they are gonna combine ChromeOS and Android so it really wouldn't be hard for Google to simply bake in something like Crossover to support some legacy Windows programs, Apple will keep the high end, although frankly i think their stock is gonna take a serious tumble when everyone sees that Cook can't pull new markets out of his ass like Jobs did, and MSFT will be relegated to legacy installs and a bunch of MSFT stores that will look like ghost towns.

In the end it won't be because Google made this truly amazing thing, although I give them credit in that they are putting in the work, nope its because Steve Ballmer drank too much eggnog and got it in his head you can take a Pinto, slap a coat of paint on it along with a $100,000 price tag, and it will magically compete with a Porsche. MSFT is a Walmart brand but because Ballmer cares more about what Wall Street thinks than in making good products he is just gonna copy every damned thing Apple is doing and think that people will buy windows...why? Because they like the WinFlag? He butchered the UI, his appstore is a joke, and just ask Intel about how well those crazy high Ultrabooks sold, they got warehouses full of the things.

At the end of the day Windows 8 just doesn't work, the new office will probably end up all metro and ribbon and it won't work, so frankly all Google has to do is make something that works and that lets you do things easily and they can take the Walmart shoppers and the small businesses simply by virtue of MSFT thinking they can take Apple's customers, how retarded. want a perfect example of Ballmer thinking? He said when he canceled Windows Home Server "Oh we have all those features in windows SBS now so we aren't leaving the market as people will just switch to SBS". Hmmm...Windows Home Server..$40, Windows SBS? $400!!! But that is Ballmer in a nutshell, he thinks he can take a brand that has sold at Walmart prices for damned near 30 years and just jack the living fuck out of the price and people will go "Ohh Windows is a hip brand now so we'll pay!" yeah the reason that Google is gaining is because Ballmer and his marketing drones go over about as well as a shit brown Zune.

BeOS (4, Interesting)

unixisc (2429386) | about a year and a half ago | (#42393759)

Which AT&T CPU was BeOS originally on? And when the BeBox was made, the PREP boxes from Motorola were already making their rounds - the PPC was nowhere near fading. Be's mistake was in jettisoning the BeBox before Motorola, Power Computing and Umax endorsed BeOS. When Apple pulled the plug on the clone business, Be could have offered them the choice of making BeOS the default OS for their PREP boxes - in that case, Power Computing would have survived, and PPC, despite this setback and despite OS/2-PPC coming unhinged, would have had a better chance at being successful.

x86 was never a good platform for Be - anybody who had an x86 ran Windows on it, or at a distant second, Linux or OS/2. There was hardly room for a third, fourth or fifth OS. Putting BeOS on one of the alternatives, like PPC was a good move, as was coming out w/ a whole new computer such as the BeBox. Just that as a new OS, there was little native software for that platform (would have been the case on either PPC or x86) and the BeBox itself was more of a home/hobbyist computer, much like the Amigas or Ataris. Had Be kept that platform going and released essential software for it, from money managers, games, office suites, et al, instead of abandoning it just b'cos it could be adapted by clone makers, they may well have been more successful.

Re: one of the biggest and most powerful companies (1)

unixisc (2429386) | about a year and a half ago | (#42393831)

But Google would have to do better than putting Android on desktops - it won't work any more than Metro does. And ChromeOS is available today, but hasn't taken off. A better idea for Google would be to take ReactOS, make a distro/clone of it that's compatible w/ Windows 7 for 64-bit and XP for 32-bit, and offer it to the market. Heck, they could even buy AMD to keep Intel honest. What Google could do is offer ReactOS - call it something like 'Google Windows' - and offer it on x86 PCs, while at an even lower end, offer ChromeOS on ARM based Chromebooks for those who prefer the discount to the ability to run Wintel apps. Google would then have both the low and mid range covered, while Apple will have its loyal following in the high end.

Re: one of the biggest and most powerful companies (3, Funny)

csumpi (2258986) | about a year and a half ago | (#42393973)

What a great plan. I'm pretty sure Microsoft would love this, and there would be no lawyers involved.

Re: one of the biggest and most powerful companies (3, Interesting)

cheesybagel (670288) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394145)

Actually only seldom have 100% backwards compatible applications or OSes succeeded. UNIX was not the same as Multics. MS-DOS was not the same as CP/M. Microsoft Word was not the same as Wordperfect and Excel was not the same as Lotus. You will probably notice some patterns here. The new entrant was cheaper or the incumbent did not bother switching platforms as the market shifted. ChromeOS has failed so far but Android has not. Microsoft managed to alienate their OEMs with Surface enough that Chromebooks are actually starting to be pushed to the end client in a way I personally never believed would happen. So who knows.

When compatibility matters (1)

unixisc (2429386) | about a year and a half ago | (#42395035)

I wasn't talking about challengers. I don't expect OS/2 to be compatible w/ Windows, or even 64-bit Windows to be compatible w/ 32-bit Windows. But I do expect Windows 8 to be compatible w/ Windows 7, Windows 7 to be compatible w/ Vista, Word 2007 to be compatible w/ Word 2003, Linux 3.3 to be compatible w/ Linux 2.6, and so on. Essentially, if I could run something on, say, Mint Maya, I expect it to run on Mint Nadia. If I could run something on Windows 7, it should run on Windows 8. If it ran on PC-BSD 8, it should run on PC-BSD 9. It should not depend on which versions of GTK+ or glibc a particular version comes w/. All that stuff should be abstract, and well hidden from the end users.

Problem in Linux is that there are several points of incompatibility @ several places, which exacerbates the incompatibility issue. First, there is the kernel itself. Then there are the libraries - the glibc, gtl+ and Qt, as well as the compilers. Then there are potentially others, such as the X11 versions that are being used. Any change in one can throw one off in terms of compatibility, but when you have several things changing, as is usual for distros to do while going from 1 generation to another, it's a guarantee that an application that worked in RHEL 5 won't work in RHEL 6 w/o re-compilation, and that too is not guaranteed, given what else might have changed.

For Google's ChromeOS, since it's based on Gentoo, they may either just follow that, or they may fork and follow their own roadmap. If they do the latter, they may well have a good handle on the compatibility issue, since they are the ones who will be writing most of the applications for their platform. The advantage w/ ReactOS is that w/ such a solution, they could also leverage older apps that Microsoft itself no longer supports, but which people have lying around. That way, they could give legacy customers added reasons to try them.

Re: one of the biggest and most powerful companies (1)

um... Lucas (13147) | about a year and a half ago | (#42393869)

More simply, BeOS was never in the category of being (or trying to be) a windows replacement, unless you looked extremely far down the road. That should have been evident by their choice of hardware to run on. The worst threat be posed was to next, as to Mac fans everywhere, they were the leading contender up until Steve jobs walked across the stage.

Netscape and WordPerfect are different stories. and even so, if not for tactics such as making os updates that broke their competitors software or simply integrated it into the operating system, both might still be around today. There was a time that Microsoft really took its gloves off... Like the Microsoft of old would have produced an update that redirected attempts to access google sites elsewhere, or just caused files downloaded with the name "chrome" in them to be hopelessly corrupted...

Re: one of the biggest and most powerful companies (1)

David Gerard (12369) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394257)

While Microsoft did pull every scurvy trick you can think of with IE, it is both true and important that Netscape 4 was such a rickety piece of shit that IE was actually better to use; that Netscape passed up the chance to release an open source Netscape 5 based on the old code base; and that Mozilla took just too fucking long.

Re: one of the biggest and most powerful companies (-1)

cyborg_monkey (150790) | about a year and a half ago | (#42393879)

You predict 5 years, huh? I like the part where you're a moron, but stating your opinions as fact and someone modded you up.

Re: one of the biggest and most powerful companies (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42394117)

You predict 5 years, huh? I like the part where you're a moron, but stating your opinions as fact and someone modded you up.

I like the part where you got modded into oblivion for making and ad hominem attack while stating your opinion as fact.

Re: one of the biggest and most powerful companies (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42395021)

@ cyborg_monkey

Steve, is that you?

Re: one of the biggest and most powerful companies (2)

Tagged_84 (1144281) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394015)

Meh I've felt for the last year that MS and Windows are on the way out. Windows 8 was there attempt to get people used to Metro and attempt some relevance in the touch space. The desktop is dead and MS know that, the new market is in the touch devices and using task-based UIs over file-based ones. My house mate is anxiously awaiting his new Nokia phone, and believes MS can manage to capture 30% so we have a good conversation about their new actions most days.

With Android expecting to hit 90% market share next year I believe their only chance is to get on the augmented reality bandwagon and hope Apple don't have something in development yet. With rumours that the next Xbox will have an AR addon it's quite possible they are doing this.

Re: one of the biggest and most powerful companies (1)

tibman (623933) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394811)

I doubt that desktop is dead though. Could you imagine cubicle farms where everyone programs/admins from tablets? *shudders*

Re: one of the biggest and most powerful companies (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42394113)

Please keep in mind that Windows 8 is only a small part of Microsoft's revenue. They don't want to small market. They don't see Google or Linux as competitors because they have outgrown those markets. They want to take business from IBM and Oracle, not Google or Apple. Windows 8 is nickel and dime compared to massive multi-million dollar MS SQL deployments. Servers and business systems are where the money is at. Licensing is like printing money. Retail markets are ugly. The only reason Microsoft is getting into new businesses is to protect their big products.

Re: one of the biggest and most powerful companies (4, Insightful)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394261)

I might want some of what you're smoking.

Microsoft made their money on Windows and Office. When they lose that base, they are on the way down. When the fall starts, it will accelerate rapidly.

On second thought, no, I don't want any of what you're smoking.

Re: one of the biggest and most powerful companies (1)

unixisc (2429386) | about a year and a half ago | (#42395117)

IBM is today more of a service and consultancy company, aside from the R&D they do on their high end computers, like POWER and Z-Series. They are a leading partner of SAP - there is no way Microsoft could challenge them there. With Oracle, Microsoft has some change, but there too, Oracle has an advantage of being multi-platform on Unix, Linux and Windows, as opposed to Microsoft, which is Windows only. Microsoft could do well by getting into applications services, but there too, they've killed off products which could have helped them be successful there, such as NT/RISC or Windows Server/Itanium. If they had an Alpha or Itanium farm in which they'd host applications specifically ported, such as SharePoint, Dynamics, SQL Server, et al, and sold services based on them w/o pricing people arms & legs, they'd have been better off.

But they're not gonna do it by just mimicking Apple.

Re: one of the biggest and most powerful companies (5, Insightful)

jbolden (176878) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394229)

How did MS Office become dominant? Because Wordperfect was run by morons who thought that even though Windows was the dominant platform they could just sit on ass and repackage their DOS version and made a buggy POS that bombed.

That is not at all what happened. First off Microsoft Word for DOS at the time of the Windows switch was already a rather good product and quite popular. While it was clearly in 2nd / 3rd place it wasn't coming out of nowhere.

WordPerfect was heavily focused on cross platform and many non DOS versions. They were working on a Windows versions and came out within about a year of Windows 3.0's release. DOS was still the dominant platform when WordPerfect for Windows came out. It wasn't all that much more buggy than any of the word Processors were. Word was a bit faster, and better integrated the all around best experience but AmiPro, WordPerfect... were better and frankly DeScribe was likely the most feature rich least buggy word processor of the time.

Where Microsoft won was price pure and simple. $129 "competitive upgrades" for an entire office suite when most of the competition was selling each component at $495 (retail) was devastating. WordPerfect was hit with a common problem where it made economic sense for them lose marketshare rather than immediately cut prices by 90%. They eventually did offer a product mixed with Borland's Paradox and QuatroPro but by then it was too late.

so what you're saying is (1)

cultiv8 (1660093) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394287)

2013 is the year of the Linux desktop

No (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42394429)

2012 WAS the year of the Linux phone. No irony whatsoever. M$ craps into their pants. See Win 8.

Re: one of the biggest and most powerful companies (3, Interesting)

jbolden (176878) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394325)

has sold at Walmart prices for damned near 30 years

IBM compatibles did not sell at Walmart prices for damned near 30 years. Commodore, Synclair, Atari owned that market slice during the 80s and the early 90s. Apple was lower end than Microsoft. Microsoft was positioned nicely in the middle range with the "junky" systems beneath them and the "too expensive" systems: DEC, SGI, Sun, IBM RISC/6000 ... above them.

The Walmart pricing is a product of the 2000s where corporations stopped upgrading rapidly and thus applications had to support older machines, and discount machines offered the capabilities of older machines. That's a nasty cycle that Microsoft partially created by allowing for a pause with Windows XP. They realize their mistake and they are fixing it.

And yeah, the bottom 1/3rd of the Windows market, which shouldn't have been part of the midrange in the first place might go for something cheaper.

Re: one of the biggest and most powerful companies (1)

renoX (11677) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394361)

> same again with Windows VS BeOS, which chose first a lame AT&T CPU that bombed, then the Motorola chip that was already fading before finally getting the sense too late to make an X86 version.

You mean the x86 version that Microsoft prevented the PC makers to install (otherwise the PC makers would have to pay more for Microsoft software)?

Re: one of the biggest and most powerful companies (3, Insightful)

Prof.Phreak (584152) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394185)

Don't forget the whole internet thing and how they ignored it.

You mean pwned? (1)

Taco Cowboy (5327) | about a year and a half ago | (#42393737)

one of the biggest and most powerful companies in the world got pwned by an advertising company. lol

ftfy

Awful Summary (1, Insightful)

PhillC (84728) | about a year and a half ago | (#42393393)

"....Swiss drug maker Hoffmann-La Roche, where over 80,000 employees use the package." - Which package?

"Google added the ability to work on a computer not connected to the Internet...." - Really? This is a Google invention?

Context is everything. Simply snipping an article excerpt, without correct context, is poor editorial work.

Re:Awful Summary (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42393413)

slashdot is not a news site is it? I mean i never looked at it that way. slashdot i a news aggregator for nerds and a comment forum. if i want to get all the info in context, i RTFA.

Re:Awful Summary (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42394137)

Slashdot i a news aggregator for nerds and a comment forum.

Which would explain why that's its motto, right? "Slashdot: news aggregation for nerds, with a comment forum!"

It's a news site, tard. If it were just an aggregator, we wouldn't need editors. Since we have shitty summaries like this, we might as well NOT have editors, and just go reddit style, by letting the mouth breathers vote up their favorite pro-Google, pro-Bitcoin, pro-Android, or pro-RPi screed of the day.

If the editors can't do their jobs, they deserve to be criticized for it. If I don't do my job, I sure as fuck hear about it.

Re:Awful Summary (1)

Kawahee (901497) | about a year and a half ago | (#42393415)

I agree. I've noticed that /. summaries are getting less and less self-contained.

I think that this was the worst one [slashdot.org] in recent memory, with "WAF" going unexplained.

This one [slashdot.org] was also particularly bad.

Re:Awful Summary (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42393421)

Context is everything. Simply snipping an article excerpt, without correct context, is poor editorial work.

Are you new here? Did you win your 5-digit ID in a lottery or something? Poor editing is the modus operandi of /.

Re:Awful Summary (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42393429)

Which package?

Google Apps. It's in the second sentence of the article.

Really? This is a Google invention?

How do you get a claim of invention? they've simply added it to their product.

Context is everything. Simply snipping an article excerpt, without correct context, is poor editorial work.

Granted the submitter could have substituted for 'it", but he does say "from the article," which should have given you some indication of where to look. You could have answered your own questions faster than you wrote your complaint. And you even had to resort to a straw man to stretch it all the way out to a whopping two items.

Re:NYTimes article paste... (5, Interesting)

SternisheFan (2529412) | about a year and a half ago | (#42393745)

Hi, humble submitter here. Reading the linked article is almost always more informative than the /. 'blurb'. I saw this story and I thought readers here might not have known that Google has been gradually getting a 'piece of the action, undercuts MS's prices by more than half (per user), MS package doesn't include email (extra purchase) and other things that are in Google Apps. MS shuld be worried.

Here's a quick paste from the article:

Google Apps Challenging Microsoft in Business By QUENTIN HARDY Published: December 25, 2012 Facebook Twitter Google+ Save E-mail Share Print Reprints SAN FRANCISCO — It has taken years, but Google seems to be cutting into Microsoft’s stronghold — businesses.

Virginie Drujon-Kippelen for The New York Times

Jim Nielsen, center, of Shaw Industries calculated that using Google instead of similar Microsoft products would cost, over seven years, about one-thirteenth Microsoft’s price.

Google’s software for businesses, Google Apps, consists of applications for document writing, collaboration, and text and video communications — all cloud-based, so that none of the software is on an office worker’s computer. Google has been promoting the idea for more than six years, and it seemed that it was going to appeal mostly to small businesses and tech start-ups.

But the notion is catching on with larger enterprises. In the last year Google has scored an impressive string of wins, including at the Swiss drug maker Hoffmann-La Roche, where over 80,000 employees use the package, and at the Interior Department, where 90,000 use it.

One big reason is price. Google charges $50 a year for each person using its product, a price that has not changed since it made its commercial debut, even though Google has added features. In 2012, for example, Google added the ability to work on a computer not connected to the Internet, as well as security and data management that comply with more stringent European standards. That made it much easier to sell the product to multinationals and companies in Europe.

Many companies that sell software over the cloud add features without raising prices, but also break from traditional industry practice by rarely offering discounts from the list price.

Microsoft’s Office suite of software, which does not include e-mail, is installed on a desktop PC or laptop. In 2013, the list price for businesses will be $400 per computer, but many companies pay half that after negotiating a volume deal.

At the same time, Microsoft has built its business on raising prices for extra features and services. The 2013 version of Office, for example, costs up to $50 more than its predecessor.

“Google is getting traction” on Microsoft, said Melissa Webster, an analyst with IDC. “Its ‘good enough’ product has become pretty good. It looks like 2013 is going to be the year for content and collaboration in the cloud.”

Re:Awful Summary (2)

Kwirl (877607) | about a year and a half ago | (#42393485)

'Added the ability' is not meant to be read 'invented' - please bring a meaninful criticism to the discussion if you have one.

Re:Awful Summary (2)

cheesybagel (670288) | about a year and a half ago | (#42393689)

Yeah. It's like they added this feature to their product. Rather than Microsoft who claims they 'innovate' everything they do.

There's a joke somewhere in there... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42393497)

... About the size of Brin's and Ballmer's package, but I can't quite get a hold on it.

Awful comment (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42393609)

How do you get "invention" from "feature"?

even though Google has added features. In 2012, for example, ...

Re:Awful Summary (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42393731)

Replace "cloud computing" with "someone else's computer".

Does it make sense from a shareholder point of view, that a company leaks its IP this way?
For the small convenience of downscaling the IT department, the future of the company is given away.

If I owned Hoffmann-La Roche stocks I'd be furious.

Be Assured (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42394481)

..the only leaks will be to something like 19 (or was it 179 ?) US Intelligence Agencies. By means of a nicely worded letter; no judicial procedures required whatsoever.

Re:Awful Summary (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42393763)

"....Swiss drug maker Hoffmann-La Roche, where over 80,000 employees use the package." - Which package?

"Google added the ability to work on a computer not connected to the Internet...." - Really? This is a Google invention?

Google's inventiveness never fails to leave me breathless... Have they patented this revolutionary innovation yet?

Re:Awful Summary (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42393841)

It's not even accurate. I work for Roche in the UK, and currently, we use MS Office. There are apparently plans to transition us to Google Apps sometime in 2013, but that's as close as it gets. I believe that this is the case for other countries, and the global organisation too. (Incidentally, this transition was pushed by the Roche - Genentech merger: Genentech uses Google Apps, and to align the two organisations, one had to move. Google won... although Genentech colleagues lament the loss of Outlook to this day.)

In addition, while I can see that Gmail / Calendar and maybe document editing will be fine, I'd expect that a good swathe of the company will still need MS Excel - lots of us regularly use functionality that the Google spreadsheet doesn't possess.

Re:Awful Summary (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394173)

Simply snipping an article excerpt, without correct context, is poor editorial work.

You must be new here. And moderators, the parent post, my comment, and every comment responding to the comment is offtopic. I don't come here to read someone whining about how bad the summary is, and the fact that it was first post makes it even worse.

Come on, guys, we need a whole lot of downmods here. It's all offtopic.

Re:Awful Summary (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42394815)

I think that because we are nerds and don't all possess a measurable level of autism, the snips provided are sufficient.
Here's how I dealt with the ...
Which package? - probably some package which is competitive with the MS Office Suite
Really? This is a Google invention? - no, no, no, my friend, they added it to their product, of course.

So, for those who are able to function in normal society without having to consult an encyclopedia for contextual clues, the summary was sufficient. For those who can't, and now you know you can't. You probably should RFTA.

Google 'has not yet shown they are truly serious' (1)

znrt (2424692) | about a year and a half ago | (#42393397)

Have you?

Hold on, let me google translate this... (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42393473)

From Language: Microsoft Business Division Marketspeak

"Google has not yet shown they are truly serious. From the outside, they are an advertising company."

To Language: Reality

"We have shit in our pants about this and aren't able to figure out how to avoid destruction, so we'll try to dismiss the threat. We always say the same about real threats. And worst, our bad dreams always turn up true (see previous dismissals about Linux, Apple, Facebook and Google before)"

No bells and whistles (4, Insightful)

olau (314197) | about a year and a half ago | (#42393509)

Now gmail and to some extent also video chat in Google are pretty impressive. But the rest of the Google Apps are pretty pathetic feature-wise compared to MS Office. Except for collaboration features that just work out of the box.

But the problem for Microsoft is that with more and more business communication never going through paper, many of these features are actually not terribly important compared to effortless collaboration, in fact their existence just make the products more complicated.

An exception here might be Excel and the support for extending Word/Excel/Outlook - some people integrate their workflow toolchain into Office rather than the other way around. But still, a sizable chunk of Microsoft's market could probably switch and be happier.

I guess that's why Microsoft is jumping on the cloud bandwagon too. Which strikes me as a smart idea, I do think that most organizations would probably prefer to continue to pay Microsoft, even if it's a bit more expensive.

Re:No bells and whistles (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42393593)

And GMail has been vastly more stable than Outlook with the necessary Exchange servers. Most sites are, frankly, not capable of running an enterprise capable mail server. Even at larger sites, the investment to run mission critical mail services, with all the security and backup resources, without all the critical pieces in the head of one single person who is likely to *leave* for a better job with all that expertise is a enormous. It scales *much* better than hiring Exchange experts and DBA's and hardware experts to handle the Exchange system itself, and it Just Works for those noisy, aggravating Windows and Linux and smart phone users.

Re:No bells and whistles (1)

unixisc (2429386) | about a year and a half ago | (#42395169)

How does one compare Gmail to Outlook? The former is a mail portal. The latter is a mail client, while Exchange is a mail server. Can I recall mails on Gmail the way I can if I had Exchange Server & Outlook? In my last 2 jobs, that's a good capability we had. Unfortunately, I've not seen that replicated elsewhere.

Re:No bells and whistles (5, Informative)

cheesybagel (670288) | about a year and a half ago | (#42393707)

Most of the new clients Microsoft has had recently came to it because of SharePoint. Google Apps collaboration features basically kill SharePoint. Yes it also kills Outlook and Exchange.

Re:SharePoint (3, Informative)

lwriemen (763666) | about a year and a half ago | (#42393797)

I've never understood the point of SharePoint. Maybe I've never seen it implemented properly, but I don't see how a company could come up with a valid cost/benefit justification for it. OTOH, marketing promises and the lure of moving all IT to low-cost sites probably makes it very attractive to corporate heads; (often unmeasured) worker productivity be damned.

Re:SharePoint (4, Insightful)

erp_consultant (2614861) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394065)

I've never seen it implemented properly either. From my experience I've seen document versions disappear and the whole checkin/checkout thing seems to get confused. So people end up doing a save as and giving the new version a different name than the previous one...defeating the purpose of SharePoint. It seems to be quite slow as well. Again, maybe this was just the way it was being managed but I'm still looking for a correctly implemented version.

Re:SharePoint (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42394515)

Sounds like SourceSafe (which should actually be called SourceShredder). But hey, it is from M$, so it MUST be good !

Re:No bells and whistles (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42394167)

Most users don't need those advanced features, too. So the 2% of people who need the fancy features can have Excel and everyone else can use Google.

Not a good situation for MS by any measure.

They are an advertising company, like who else? (4, Informative)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | about a year and a half ago | (#42393519)

Google 'has not yet shown they are truly serious,' said Julia White, a general manager in Microsoft’s business division. 'From the outside, they are an advertising company.'

From: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/hh506371(v=msads.10).aspx [microsoft.com]

Microsoft Advertising SDK for Windows 8

The Microsoft Advertising SDK for Windows 8 allows developers to show ads in their apps. You can use your Windows 8 apps to make money by including ads from Microsoft Advertising. The Microsoft Advertising SDK for Windows 8 along with Microsoft pubCenter enables you to create apps that:

  • Easily integrate text and banner ads into your apps and games.
  • Provide a money making solution that maximizes in-app advertising.
  • Provide ad targeting capabilities to deliver the most relevant ads to your users.
  • Seamlessly handle impression reporting.
  • Monitor your ad performance in real time.

Re:They are an advertising company, like who else? (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42394191)

That's awesome. Please compare for us:

1) The percentage of Google's revenues that are from advertising;

with

2) The percentage of Microsoft's revenues that are from advertising;

Here, I did it for you: Microsoft makes about 4% of its revenues [tannerhelland.com] from advertising, and that's generous - it falls into the "Online Services" category, and 4% would assume they made no money other than from advertising in that space. Google makes 96% of its revenues from advertising [google.com] .

Microsoft is an "advertising company" like Google is a "hardware company" - that is to say, not at all.

Re:They are an advertising company, like who else? (4, Informative)

RazorSharp (1418697) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394451)

You should check out how much money Microsoft has spent over the last ten years trying to become an advertising company. They know that between FOSS alternatives and Google that MS Office is doomed and they're looking for a new cash cow. They tried TV (many times in many ways) and failed. They tried video games and, while they managed to break into the market, it's certainly no cash cow like Office is. That's why their current focus is on Bing and cloud services and other services that Google already does better and more successfully -- basically, the statistic you provided just demonstrates how massively MS is failing in their current endeavors. They're still just milking the same old cows that are ready for the slaughterhouse while their grain fields are failing to grow.

Re:They are an advertising company, like who else? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42395183)

You should check out how much money Microsoft has spent over the last ten years trying to become an advertising company.

This argument is stupid, because it's functionally equivalent to shouting that Apple is dying because iAd isn't replacing their hardware revenues.

Ads for Microsoft = "Why let Google make billions off of this, why don't we try and take some of that money ourselves?"

Ads for Apple = "Why let Google make billions off of this, why don't we try and take some of that money ourselves?

Ads for Google = "Bread and butter, if we don't own this market, we cease to exist. Therefore we'll dump low- and no-cost software into every market we can possibly think of a way to sell advertising in, and we'll rape our users' privacy for our customers' benefit."

Google's model is NOT inevitable. Google's model is NOT the only possible way to make money in the software industry. Why don't the GOOG-tards on slashdot understand that their credibility on business matters is about as solid as their never-ending predictions that "next year is SURELY the year of the Linux desktop?" You *clearly* have no concept of how these things work. Why do you set yourselves up for the disappointment of being constantly WRONG?

Re:They are an advertising company, like who else? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42395047)

Dear mods -

"-1, Flamebait," is not equivalent to "-1, My Opinion Conflicts With Your Facts."

I am scared. (-1, Troll)

alphatel (1450715) | about a year and a half ago | (#42393607)

This whole submission makes me think, "don't feed the trolls".

The Cloud (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42393739)

I'm not ready to trust all of my data to the cloud. I'm not buying into the marketing hype about security. I don't mind emails stored on the cloud as most of us have been doing this since we've started using the internet but that is the extent.

Re:The Cloud (1)

erp_consultant (2614861) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394095)

That's the sticking point for me as well. It seems to me that if someone wants to perform a security breach they are going to go for a big target, not little old me. They are not looking for one credit card number they are looking for millions. So it's only a matter of time before one of these big cloud vendors get violated. Then these big companies are going to get mighty nervous.

Re:The Cloud (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42394253)

Well, there's the rub - can you secure your systems better than the folks at Google can secure theirs? Just because they're a bigger target doesn't mean they're more easily hacked. In fact, if they're properly secured, they probably have a lot less to worry about in terms of being hacked than a lot of small and mid-size businesses I've worked for over the past 20 years - most of these companies don't have the resources to hire a dedicated security team, and end up with security that's only as good as their sysadmin has time and experience enough to set up - which is, generally speaking, not that great.

Of course, if you really don't trust Google and are absolutely positive you can do it better, the article makes it clear that Google Apps supports offline work, so there's no reason you can't work offline and store sensitive documents (or all documents) locally instead of in Google's cloud storage, as well. If Google's offerings don't support offline work like they claim to, well, shame on them for fraudulent advertising.

+1 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42394533)

I would even say Google is better in security than 99% of the large multi-billion corporations. I work for one, and their security is mostly a big fat joke. One bad computer in the intranet can basically hose everything.

Google has not yet shown they are truly serious... (5, Funny)

guyniraxn (1579409) | about a year and a half ago | (#42393777)

"We are not planning on doing anything until it is too late." said Julia White, a general manager in Microsoft’s business division.

Re:Google has not yet shown they are truly serious (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42393839)

Are Microsoft managers deluded, or simply dismissive?

Remember this?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eywi0h_Y5_U&feature=youtube_gdata

90% of the time =! 90% of the market (0)

retroworks (652802) | about a year and a half ago | (#42393821)

Simple fallacy in the Google rep's logic. My business uses google aps 90% of the time. And we purchase Microsoft Office.

I use forward gears in my car 90% of the time, but value the ability to go in reverse. Most of us, by this logic, are also a vegetarians 90% of the time, but don't abandon your McDonald's stock. Google apps are even necessary for many of our office activity, but not sufficient.

Microsoft Live is not yet Google Docs, and Google Docs are a long way from Microsoft Office (though each is getting closer).

Re:90% of the time =! 90% of the market (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42394561)

MS Office is also not Google Docs - look at their collaboration features and you see why.

Re:90% of the time =! 90% of the market (3, Insightful)

Cytotoxic (245301) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394563)

Microsoft Live is not yet Google Docs, and Google Docs are a long way from Microsoft Office (though each is getting closer).

For a large volume of uses Google Docs is sufficient. If you need to create a simple memo or even a modest legal document Docs is certainly good enough. But it is not remotely getting closer to Office in the larger picture. Office is moving forward much, much faster in high-end business applications. Just take the example of Excel: the new data analysis and reporting capabilities built in to Excel are simply amazing. They exceed anything available from the best vertical reporting apps just a few years back, and are accessible to advanced business users for "playing around" with the data in ways that formerly would have required advanced data warehouse experts. These features in Excel are game changing in the corporate environment where Excel is a stock application for all business user desktops.

Why is this news? (2, Interesting)

romit_icarus (613431) | about a year and a half ago | (#42393833)

There is absolutely nothing in the NYTimes story that points to any new development that justifies the headline. Google Apps has been chipping away at the incumbent MS Office for a few years now and, at best, could be building momentum. Like many "stories" released during the Christmas season, this most likely was one of those weak story ideas that had once been shelved and has come to the rescue of some lurking journalist.

Re:Why is this news? (1)

bzipitidoo (647217) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394165)

I wonder if this whole story is veiled astroturfing. $50 per year per person is a good deal?! Compared to an online game like WoW, maybe, but not compared to free, and I suspect not compared to a support contract for that free software. Funny how the only producers mentioned by name were MS and Google. No other office suite, such as LibreOffice, was mentioned.

As for collaboration, I don't know. Should distributed version control be built into a word processor app? Why not just have a plugin for git, mercurial, subversion, or whatever? An office suite is bound to do version control worse if they try to do it themselves. And as for the cloud, how about a distributed file system such as gluster, and VPN?

Re:Why is this news? (1)

ichimunki (194887) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394367)

Google Apps collaboration is not just dvcs though. It's real time. And I've seen documents where the number of simultaneous users was in the double digits. That's a bit more interesting than a git plugin. Such a plugin would need to be committing, pushing, and pulling constantly. I guess it could be done and it would be totally awesome if it were... but then you need another plugin for shared document management that is as painless as Google Apps is (which has the added benefit of being able to make a document shared with the entire internet pretty much instantly). At some point, Google Apps will reach a tipping point over MS Office for most mundane tasks, and then there will be no going back. The big thing that's missing from Google Apps at this point is some sort of MS Access-alike. And it looks like they've got a new offering, Fusion, that may be moving in that direction.

Re:Why is this news? (1)

squiggleslash (241428) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394269)

Just for context: Google Apps is an online groupware/user management application. Microsoft Office is a suite of office-oriented applications (word processor, spreadsheet, etc.) While Google offers a suite of office oriented applications (Google Docs), and like most Google tools, it can be managed with Google Apps, it's not really the same kinda thing. If I had to link equivalent products, I'd say Active Directory::Google Apps, Exchange/Outlook::GMail, Microsoft Office::Google Docs.

In each case, the Google version is entirely online, so it's not like you can manage people's PCs using Google Apps. But you do manage their accounts, rights, etc, when it comes to the online tools tied into the system.

Re:Why is this news? (1)

MtViewGuy (197597) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394737)

Google will try, but the fact it is not fully compatible with the mountain of Microsoft Office files generated out there over the years is why Google Apps will not seriously challenge Office--especially once Microsoft releases Office to run on the iOS platform (due some time in 2013).

So...do the math. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42393861)

$50/year/user. Over the course of 5 years, that's $250.

We still have computers that are happily using Office 2007 without a hitch....and the licenses cost us less than $250/computer

Sure, you have the "new features" aspect of Google's apps....however, a majority of my company's users aren't power users who use a majority of the features in Word/Excel/PP anyways....so new features generally aren't used anyways.

Re:So...do the math. (3, Informative)

CrankyFool (680025) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394281)

If you're comparing the cost of GAFYD (Google Apps For Your Domain) to the cost of running Word, Excel, and Powerpoint on your desktop, then either you're doing it wrong, or you wouldn't be well served to switch.

Where GAFYD kicks Microsoft's ass is in online collaboration (because it's better) and unified messaging (because it's less expensive). So it's not about Word -- it's about Google Talk being better than Microsoft Lync, and about Google Mail and Google Drive being being more cost-effective than Microsoft Exchange and Microsoft Sharepoint.

Because it turns out it costs a little more than $50/person to run a really great-running Exchange environment. That's not an oxymoron, BTW - I currently work at a company that has a fantastic Exchange environment, best I've ever seen run. And I'm really going to miss it in the upcoming quarter when IT shoves our migration to GAFYD down my throat. And I'm not even a Windows user ...

Nobody ever got fired for choosing Microsoft (0)

Danathar (267989) | about a year and a half ago | (#42393881)

Granted I'm sure SOMEBODY somewhere has gotten fired for choosing Microsoft, but from my perspective one of the big problems in government (where I work) is that there is almost ZERO risk to choosing whatever MS happens to sell, even if it's horrible.

If you stick your neck out and choose something like Google Apps and it goes south all the fingers point at you. If on the other hand you choose Office 365 and things don't work out you can EASILY just point the finger at Microsoft and say "It's Microsoft and Windows, not my fault).

Re:Nobody ever got fired for choosing Microsoft (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42394641)

??? You make no sense. How about "It's [replace vendor X], not my fault"

Faulty logic.

Not even going to consider it (-1, Troll)

Pollux (102520) | about a year and a half ago | (#42393923)

I'm not putting my documents into the hands of Google until Google can guarantee me that it will stay private. Of course, the only way they can afford to do that is by charging me for their service, since the cost of their service being free is the ability to harvest data for advertising purposes. Remember when using Google (and Facebook, or any other free site for that matter): you are not the customer, you (and your data) are the product.

Now, if Microsoft would just get smacked upside the head, see what Google is beating them at, and design a product that their customers want, they wouldn't be in this mess to begin with. If anyone here works at Microsoft, please listen: I want a product that is Office 365 / Google Docs, but installed on a private server/s onsite in a way that integrates with Active Directory. I want to sign in securely through a web window, edit my onsite documents through the web portal while at home or away on business, allow others to have access to the documents to read and/or edit and edit collaboratively online, and have those documents there for me to open back up and edit the traditional way (logging into a computer joined to the domain and opening the file in Microsoft Office) when I'm back at work. And since the data is hosted onsite, no one's looking at or harvesting my data for marketing purposes, and I can tell my boss that the security of data is in our hands, our responsibility, and our responsibility alone. I could be a hospital, a business, a school, a government agency, I could work for any entity that needs to guarantee to his superiors that no one else but us will have access to this data. Google can never promise that.

Microsoft, if you do this, you'll maintain control of the business market for at least another decade. Don't let Google erode privacy away.

Re:Not even going to consider it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42394037)

I'm not putting my documents into the hands of Google until Google can guarantee me that it will stay private. Of course, the only way they can afford to do that is by charging me for their service

What on earth are you babbling about? This article is about Google's paid service for businesses. They do charge for it. That's how they make (or seek to make) money on it.

Re:Not even going to consider it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42394655)

I'm not putting my documents into the hands of Google until Google can guarantee me that it will stay private. Of course, the only way they can afford to do that is by charging me for their service, since the cost of their service being free is the ability to harvest data for advertising purposes. Remember when using Google (and Facebook, or any other free site for that matter): you are not the customer, you (and your data) are the product.

Did you even read the headline? Google does charge for this service.

It is reasonable to be concerned about the implications of trusting a company with sensitive data. Idiots like you chanting sensational slogans that do not apply to the topic make the reasonable people look like morons. Stop it.

Microsoft fighting Apple, forgetting Google (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42393935)

Google is catching up, but that's only half of it. Microsoft is doing damage to themselves at an impressive pace with recent actions and releases. Foremost is the recent release of WIndows 8 and 8/RT. The best reviews are lukewarm, and there's widespread criticism that Win 8 is focused on media consumption... largely at the expense of business productivity. The don't-call-it-Metro UI style is great on the phone, but more difficult on the 8/RT scale (yes I have one, and while it's handy on the metro side, the classic UI apps), and genuinely hard to use in Office13. The startup is, shall we say, informal... when I unbox and turn on a new Win 8 device, the OS setup is heavily slanted toward media and app consumption and is not functional without a msft/live ID or hotmail account set up. It's easier to install apps from an external marketplace than for IT to manage the device. Office 13 wants a skydrive account, and complains loudly if it's not set up on RT or regular Win8. Using these would be a policy violation in most large enterprises/corporate environments. There's nothing substantively easier to manage in Win8 than Win7, yet the latest release adds all sorts of new unmanaged/unmanageable client-level data-sharing features that IT ought to view as handy data-exfiltration avenues.

Microsoft keeps pushing their products more in a consumer set-top direction, building a walled garden of apps, trying to social-media-ify apps that have no need for those functions, putting big buttons in apps that are often best used with a mouse, rolling in 'people' and status features into apps where typical use cases are negatively impacted by interruption...etc etc. Jesus, this is a classic three-way battlefield mistake: Ballmer has sent all the forces out of the castle to do battle with Apple (or more specifically to do battle with iPads and iPhones), while Google is coming up over the back 40 and finding the castle remarkably badly-defended. Google apps are reasonably mature and the docs/drive features are converging with enterprise management policies, while Microsoft seems to be doing everything in their power to diverge. It'll be interesting to see if Msft pulls its head out of its collective ass before Google solidifies its momentum into an actual strategic advantage.

Nothing to see here unless... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42394009)

Unless Google do a really decent alternative to Excel, I don't see them stopping companies from owning MS Office. The company I work for has moved from Outlook to Google, including the Google Docs etc and whilst it's nice to do collaborative work on Google Spreadsheet, it simply isn't that friendly as Excel for solo use.

Re:Nothing to see here unless... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42394301)

"...whilst it's nice to do collaborative work on Google Spreadsheet, it simply isn't that friendly as Excel for solo use."

We're talking about companies here... Kinda the whole point of a "company" is that you're in "company", not solo.

It's *huge* when Joe can collaboratively fix what Jane just did in a Google Doc and then their boss, on the road, can use his tablet or smartphone to "check the numbers" (without needing to "email me the last results" or any non-sense like that).

Outlook / Exchange is seen by some as a great combo to sent emails. But with collaborative editing you don't nearly to "exchange emails" nearly as often anymore.

Collaborative editing "Just Works" [TM] and it just works *today*.

A Big Improvement? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42394089)

So Google owns your data rather than Microsoft?

The other thing about Google Apps (1, Interesting)

David Gerard (12369) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394275)

The other thing about Google Apps is that it's designed for Chrome and if it works on anything else that's nice but they don't care and it's Not Supported. (You can also use Chromium.)

Not connected to the internet? How does that work? (0)

fox171171 (1425329) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394373)

Google added the ability to work on a computer not connected to the Internet

Holy crap! How is that even possible? The mere thought of being able to use a computer that is not connected to the internet blows my mind!

Wait a minute... no it doesn't.

Re:Not connected to the internet? How does that wo (1)

tibman (623933) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394987)

What about using a cloud based product without internet?

Microsoft declared war 5 years ago (1)

symbolset (646467) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394375)

It seems the market likes Google's chances of muddling through.

That is why you fail. (1)

fox171171 (1425329) | about a year and a half ago | (#42394387)

Microsoft says it does not yet see a threat.

Luke: I don't believe it!
Yoda: That is why you fail.

Google Apps vs. Exch..ohlol (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42394461)

I manage both a enterprise level Exchange environment and a Google Apps environment for a small business. Prior to Google Apps that company was on GroupWise (horrible) then Scalix (not terrible, not great). Prior to Google Apps I'd get 2-3 calls per day about email, be it something wrong or just a spam filter (Ironport) issue.

How many calls do I get about Google Apps? 0. None. Zip. In fact if I get a single call a week, that's abnormal. Usually that call is a password thing, and is rectified in about 30 seconds from any device. Even advanced "things" take at most 10 minutes, or maybe a call to Google's awesome tech support. Oh and migrations? Thanks to Scalix having ActiveSync that took me all of an hour to setup, then I let it run overnight. Yes, a platform migration took me - literally - an hour of work.

How many calls do I get about Exchange? About 3-5 and that's not counting in the fact that I'm not front-line support, so those are all escalations. And also not counting that if it's an environment issue it goes to the datacenter team. For the sake of argument, though, even the bare minimum of tasks takes me 5-10 minutes because of RD Web Access that I can only use on Windows so I either have to fire up a Windows VM or remote in to a Windows machine so I can then remote to another windows machine and then wait for ADUC to populate 25,000 mailboxes and then wait to search through and then...

Yeah. You get the idea.

So you know what, keep thinking that Microsoft. Keep thinking that Google is an advertising company because frankly, I don't care any more. My exit strategy from Exchange is already in place, it's just waiting on this thing called "depreciation" for the current Exchange cluster and the term for our enterprise agreement to come up. I can tell you exactly when that term is up, it's precisely 90 days before I'll be moving to Google Apps.

Slashdot! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42394981)

Where you can get the Drudge Report's headlines a day later!

Try supporting IE 7/8 first (2)

Billly Gates (198444) | about a year and a half ago | (#42395029)

Yeah right

First off do not tell 90% of corps who standardize on IE 6, 7, and 8 to go hell! Google docs is absolutely useless. Not even IE 8 which is the defecto standard for every single Intranet app in existence. I could see dropping IE 6 (that itself will cost business). Corps must use IE only as it is the only one with group policy, active directory, mass deployment, and a slow release cycle. Before the IE haters mod me down, ask yourselves why aren't you writing extensions to Firefox and Chrome for these features?

Also GoogleDocs is a glorified wordpad in functionality but with sharing. It is great to share something simple for a group project for college students but it is not as functional as LibreOffice or MS Office.

Office 365 has more features, integrates with the MS ecosystem, and supports older versions of IE where upgrading is out of the question and would cost more than savings with free Google Docs.

Google needs to
1. Update Chrome every 1 - 2 years
2. Add .msi, active directory, group policy, and deployment tools that are centrally managed to Chrome
3. Support ancient versions of IE. Yes, we hate them and yes HTML 5 features like drag and drop is nice, but javascript and css3pie can emulate them. With $500,000 worth of ancient apps that browser is not going away! XP users are stuck at IE 8 not to mention IE 8 is targeted for WIndows 7 users as well as it is the universal browser that works with both operating systems.

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