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Friday, January 27, 2006

Google & Enterprise Technology Players – Its Hedging Risk Strategy

Recently I wrote that Google inside enterprise would be a n interesting thing to watch – to recap, I wrote that if Google expands its footprint in the enterprise space - e.g., to develop content management or authoring tools - it will come as a hosted service or (like its enterprise search product) an appliance.
Recently, EMC and Google announced an agreement to integrate EMC Documentum Enterprise Content Integration (ECI) Services and Google Desktop search.Recently EMC’s software integrated both Google.com and the Google Search Appliance, letting customers leverage Google’s search products as information sources
. Frank Gens predicts that in the near future many enterprise vendors shall begin to court Google aggressively. In his schema,Google would provide the Web platform with its existing, massive, computing infrastructure of hundreds of thousands of servers around the world. It could team up with a whole array of companies to actually write applications — from information and content management to business analytics—on top of that platform.
It can be seen that Google is stepping into the world of enterprise and this can be seen as a precursor to Google focussing its energy in the enterprise software sector as well in the days to come. Frank points to Google having similar agreements with IBM and Sun as well, but as I see it should also be noted that EMC dumped verity as the choice search player last year and is now embracing Google – clearly the Google brand is having a good pull. This is also a precursor to consumer technologies setting integrated under the hoods so to say in the enterprise landscape. Since individuals are getting so familiar with Google, coupled with its versatility, it is pushing enterprise players to court these products more aggressively. Pervasive devices usually associated with individuals are long getting integrated into the enterprise space – mobiles, blackberry’s, VoIP applications etc.
Frankly I do not attach great importance to Google moving into the enterprise space as earthshaking – there are far better enterprise players in the fray there – specialist players offering superior benefits. Google can play the game of being inside enterprise space- that could be the only disruptive influence therein. It should be noted that the best enterprise search player is seen as Vivismo and not Google. Also it need to be noted that press releases are just that and need not become a centerpiece strategy in occassions like this. EMC seeing itself as the winner in the ECM space, would like to broadbase its appeal and this should be seen as a step in that direction. I genuinely believe that one of the reasons that EMC wants to play the Google card is to hedge against any potential acquisitions that may affect the other search players – the space is beginning to see some consolidation of late (Verity got snapped by Autonomy in a surprising move recently) With IBM & Oracle failing to make any significant dent in the enterprise content search space,tomorrow can be anybody’s guess - so it is prudent to have a strong neutral player as part of your ecosystem and that I suspect is the biggest reason for this coming together – a good move indeed on the part of EMC - but I refuse to see this as a trend wherein google could move in to storm the enterprise market.

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Sadagopan's Weblog on Emerging Technologies, Trends,Thoughts, Ideas & Cyberworld
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