Microsoft discusses its online services push

 

Microsoft has fleshed out details relating to its online services offerings to customers and partners attending its annual worldwide Partner Conference in Houston.

The services, first launched in September last year, will be available from the beginning of 2009 for UK customers, Microsoft said.

Enterprise customers will be offered the Business Productivity Suite, a subscription service encompassing a range of Microsoft software, including: Exchange, Dynamics CRM and Office (SharePoint, Communications, and Meeting), at a price of US$15 per user, per month or US$180 a year. Customers will also be able to subscribe to each service independently for a lower cost.

The charge contrasts to Google’s already available competing product, Google Apps Premier, priced at US$50 per user, per year.

But it seems Microsoft launched its higher priced services at the right time, with Google’s Docs and Spreadsheets experiencing problems this week for nearly one hour when customers were unable to access the cloud based applications.

“Google Apps is relatively new and so of course it will experience some downtime problems but the fact that Microsoft launched its online offerings at the same time is good for Microsoft,” said Redmonk analyst James Governor.

Microsoft revealed an alternative package of online services for “deskless workers”, a term Microsoft uses to describe workers that are not always hooked up to a computer, such as shop floor workers.

The Deskless Worker Suite will include Exchange and SharePoint software for a cost of US$3 per user, per month.

Governor pointed to large customer wins Google has recently made, for example Australia state New South Wales has recently switched from Microsoft Exchange to Gmail.

But Governor did believe when Microsoft started to deliver on its online service strategy, it would be aggressive.

“It will be Microsoft’s channel partners that really suffer,” he explained. “Because customers will buy directly off Microsoft,” he added.

Microsoft is offering its partners certain compensations. Partners selling either of the two suites will receive 12 per cent of the first year contract price and six per cent of the subscription fee ongoing.

itweek.co.uk @ 2010 Incisive Media


 
 
 
Top Stories
Westpac interim CIO resigns
Group CIO yet to be appointed.
 
Five emerging technologies that will transform financial services
[Blog post] Far out ideas that aren't far off.
 
Earning the right to innovate
Breaking down the barriers to innovation is a long, but rewarding process, says Bank of Queensland Group CIO, Julie Bale.
 
 
Sign up to receive iTnews email bulletins
   FOLLOW US...
Latest articles on BIT Latest Articles from BIT
Pass on carbon tax savings, warns ACCC
Jul 24, 2014
The ACCC is warning businesses that supply "regulated goods" to pass on any cost savings ...
Have customers that won't pay debts?
Jul 10, 2014
The ACCC and ASIC have updated their advice when it comes to collecting debts.
Carpet cleaner faces court over online testimonials
Jul 4, 2014
The ACCC has initiated proceedings against A Whistle (1979) Pty Ltd, the franchisor of Electrodry...
You can now get 15GB of free online storage using Microsoft OneDrive
Jun 25, 2014
Cloud storage has reached both the capacity and price where it's a viable alternative to local ...
Another clever trick you can perform with Xero
Jun 25, 2014
Here is another way to reach out to particular subsets of your customers using Xero.
Latest Comments
Polls
What is delaying adoption of public cloud in your organisation?







   |   View results
Lock-in concerns
  27%
 
Application integration concerns
  3%
 
Security and compliance concerns
  28%
 
Unreliable network infrastructure
  9%
 
Data sovereignty concerns
  23%
 
Lack of stakeholder support
  3%
 
Protecting on-premise IT jobs
  4%
 
Difficulty transitioning CapEx budget into OpEx
  3%
TOTAL VOTES: 918

Vote