As Google guns for whoever
will take its apps, the IT world still loves its traditional packages.
"The enemy of my enemy
is my friend." Or is it "the enemy of my friend is my enemy"?
The Learned Lynx was having a hard time sorting out the significance of all the
alliances that were shifted, stressed, strained and dinged in the latest
maneuvers among Salesforce.com, Google and Microsoft.
Some analysts continue to
scratch their heads over the application mashup between Salesforce.com and
Google Apps. Gartner analyst Tom Austin pondered: Why did Salesforce.com really
do this deal with Google?
See, Salesforce.com guns for
enterprise users with its CRM products. Google guns for anyone who will
take its apps, which Austin told eWEEK does not include
a lot of big businesses, since Google doesn't provide those coveted
"Google Apps are not
selling to enterprises. Not yet, anyway," Austin said. "Why would they
when a lot of users are exploiting the free Google Apps as supplements to
everything else they have? Why pay when you can get it for free? Using -for
free' products and services means no one has to sign off on the expense. And
there is no political exposure for the decision maker. If Google Apps
ultimately succeed in a big way, why, these people are heroes! If it fails, no
one knows anything. How simple is that?"
He added that the path of
least resistance for Google is to pervade as much of the enterprise as they can
in absolute stealth mode.
So, the Quizzical Katt
wondered: Will Salesforce.com chuck away its integration with Microsoft Outlook
Unlikely, Austin said. "This doesn't
feel like an attack on anyone else," he added. "The old
-the-enemy-of-my-enemy-is-my-friend' strategy doesn't seem to suffice as an
explanation. So I chalk it up to cloud PR with some unspecified, potential
Then the Sagacious Gato
turned his thoughts to what these cloud-computing developments mean for
Microsoft, as he reviewed his notes from the recent Gartner Symposium/ITxpo in Las Vegas.
Microsoft takes a beating
from the press, pundits and even Google for its Windows Live platform, which is
essentially SAAS (software as a service) built on top of Microsoft's core
desktop capabilities. Microsoft views this as its entr??Â«e into cloud computing,
where powers such as Google and Salesforce.com are well ahead. But Gartner's
David Mitchell Smith told Spencer during a meeting at the Gartner confab that
Live is, well, alive and well, calling the notion that Microsoft doesn't get
the Web "way too harsh."
So, why does Microsoft get
beaten up so much over Live? Smith said the company's well-documented struggles
to get Vista out the door, which
contributed to some executive turnover, could have gone toward building
momentum for Live.
To that end, Smith also
cautioned the high-tech world against proclaiming "the cloud is king,"
as he believes there is plenty of room for traditional packaged apps for the