Bad for business

By Steven Vaughan-Nichols  |  Posted 2005-04-14 Print this article Print

Unfortunately, even though theyre used in businesses, theyre really not that good for business. First, you cant really manage them from a centralized IT viewpoint. These programs are standalone clients.
Next, with these clients, youre essentially outsourcing your IM to a third-party system over with which your company has no contract, no guarantee of service and no real control over what they may, or may not, do with your business IMs. It may be easy, but its sure not business reliable.
To read more about AIM privacy, click here. Heck, for that matter, IM carriers such as AOL and Yahoo, can, and have, just shut down interpretability with your third-party clients. After all, its not like these companies are making money from your clients using their networks. Yes, to date, the clients programmers have always managed to recover quickly from being blocked, but just try living with a broken IM system once youve gotten used to IM. Its not pretty. Some day, somehow, one of the universal IM protocol standards like the Jabber-based XMPP (Extensible Messaging and Presence Protocol) or IMPP (Instant Messaging and Presence Protocol), will be approved. Im not holding my breath, though. Thus, when you look at the current business IM situation, I think youll agree that AOL AIM-enabling these smaller companies IM offerings is very important. As these companies roll out AIM-compatible business IM programs, companies should start seeing IM services that are more affordable, safer and easier to manage than any of the other solutions that are currently available. And that will be something worth shouting, and not just IMing, about. Senior Editor Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols has been using and writing about operating systems since the late 80s and thinks he may just have learned something about them along the way.

Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols is editor at large for Ziff Davis Enterprise. Prior to becoming a technology journalist, Vaughan-Nichols worked at NASA and the Department of Defense on numerous major technological projects. Since then, he's focused on covering the technology and business issues that make a real difference to the people in the industry.

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