Genii Weblog

Microsoft to acquire Groove and Ray Ozzie

Thu 10 Mar 2005, 11:56 PM



by Ben Langhinrichs
Well, everybody knows by now, but I thought I would put in my two cents.  I think this is a big acquisition for Microsoft, and one that will reap many rewards.  I do not think it will be an easy integration, nor do I think Ray Ozzie walks on water, but I think he is a visionary of the sort that Microsoft has lacked recently.  There are a lot of big changes coming in the IT world, and Microsoft has take some big risks to stay ahead of them, but this was a smart risk.

My prediction is that Microsoft is going to attempt to redefine the agenda again.  They successfully cast the battle between Notes/Domino and Outlook/Exchange as an e-mail battle, but e-mail is more and more of a commodity, and Exchange just isn't doing it for them anymore, so I predict that they will re-cast the collaboration battle into one about office integration (lowercase 'o'), with a far better contender in MS Office than IBM has, and with collaboration that may be a better fit for SMB than IBM has.  IBM still has a tremendous lead with Notes/Domino and its other products, but lead is less important than momentum (vis the proverbial hare and tortoise).  IBM is going to have to work really, really hard to keep the momentum, excitement and vision.

The good news is that this sort of competition is good for everybody, including the parties involved.  I envision a great many exciting skirmishes, and anticipate a whole lot of coexistence work as well.  I'm happy about the direction Genii has been moving, and this news makes me even happier about that direction.

Copyright 2005 Genii Software Ltd.

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