Zoho Oct. 19 continued its integration with Google Apps, allowing Zoho users to sign into the Zoho Projects application with their Google Apps account and sync content between the companies’ programs.
Zoho Projects is the cloud computing software maker’s project management and collaboration application. The program, which got a significant upgrade in July, lets work teams plan and track tasks, milestones, reports, time sheets, priorities and dependencies.
By integrating with Google Apps, Zoho Projects users will not only be able to pull in Google Docs files to share with other team members, but also sync Projects milestones, meetings and tasks with Google Calendar.
Moreover, users will be able to install a gadget from Zoho that lets them embed info from Projects directly inside Gmail, iGoogle and the Google Sites wiki application.
“Having project management as part of your Google Apps helps you to seamlessly work on your projects, e-mail and documents all from a single place without a need to remember multiple logins and eliminates the burden of juggling your data floating around Google Apps and project management software,” Zoho Evangelist Raju Vegnesa said in a statement.
Google Apps lacks project management capabilities, so letting Zoho build a bridge to its Zoho Projects could fill a gap for Apps users. Meanwhile, Google Apps now has 20 million users in 2 million businesses. If Zoho can continue to leverage that user base, it should be able to expand beyond its current base of 2 million users.
Zoho Projects users can access their Projects account using their Google Apps user name and e-mail password. For users who already have a Zoho Projects account, logging into their Google Apps account will automatically merge their existing Zoho Projects account, provided the e-mail ID used in both Zoho Projects and Google Apps remains the same.
This is just the latest bridge Zoho has built between its applications and Google Apps as the two companies seek to gang up on Microsoft and IBM, the old guard of on-premises collaboration software.
In May 2008, Zoho began letting users log in to Zoho with their Google and Yahoo accounts. This past August, Zoho made it possible for Google Apps users to log in to Zoho using their Google Apps domain credentials.
Zoho also sells SAAS (software as a service) business applications for customer relationship management, billing creation, project management, application development and several other enterprise functions. Zoho believes that Google Apps users may want to use their collaboration apps to extend into these complementary enterprise applications.
“Sure we compete with Google. But we compete in only a subset of apps we offer. We have a broad set of business applications which can complement Google Apps users,” Vegnesa said.