Lotus hopes that companies turned off by the proposition of overhauling their messaging infrastructure to run its products will turn to Lotus Collaboration Services, a new ASP it is forming, to use its collaboration software.
The application service provider, to be available later this quarter, will blend the companys Sametime instant messaging and e-meeting product and its QuickPlace application, which facilitates Web-based team collaboration. Companies can use the ASP to hold interdepartmental conferences and conduct business-to- business collaboration.
In an informal test of the ASP at Lotusphere earlier this month, I found it easy to create meetings and see which team members were available. Best of all, because the service is hosted, the upgrade process should be transparent to IT managers.