14:17 PM

If Office 2.0 all about scalability then GOOG has already won

This week the Office 2.0 conference is in town, at the swank St. Regis. Interesting panels (video is coming) and interesting conversations in the corridors, marks of a good event.

My quick takeaway is that there is not enough there, there. At the end of the day, we are not talking about rip and replace. Corporations won't be ditching and switching. The Office 2.0 market is not about supplanting the MSFT budgets within organizations but the incremental additional markets.

It is about bridging that digital divide within corporations, between the PC equipped knowledge workers, and the ones that don't warrant the expense of their own PC and MSFT licenses. This is a business opportunity that won't make the next Google or anywhere near. In fact, Google Apps already has the pole position because Google Apps are good enough, (and will get better) plus GOOG can offer scalability.

Nice but do you scale?

When comparing Office 2.0 apps, corporations will disregard features and user interfaces in favor of scalability. GOOG can say, "we run the largest computing platform on this planet, we can swallow 100K new users in a single day--and still offer 99.9 per cent uptime."

Which Office 2.0 company can compete against GOOG's spin? Zoho.com might (but more on that later.)

Is the future of the entire software as a service (SaaS) market going to be determined ultimately by how scalable is your software service? Because Google will win that argument every time. Watch out Salesforce, and a bunch more.

The Paris Hilton effect

But the performance of the Google cloud will be determined by the Paris Hilton effect. A run on GOOG servers searching the latest celebrity gossip could put a crimp in your Google Apps performance, and it would come out of the blue.

But so what? Google Apps in the enterprise is for your workers that don't merit their own PC and Microsoft Office apps. A slowdown or downtime won't sink your business.

Which brings me back to this question: Will success in Enterprise 2.0 be ultimately be determined by who has the most scalable platform? Has Google already won?

Here is some Office 2.0 covergae from Dan Farber at ZDNet:

Bringing Enterprise 2.0 to Morgan Stanley

Office 2.0: The future of work