Novell Aims for Improved Productivity With GroupWise 7

Novell this week launched the latest version of its collaboration platform. GroupWise 7 is now available on multiple operating system platforms.

Novell said the new version delivers significant advances designed to increase end-userproductivity, including integrated e-mail and instant messaging, enhanced Microsoft Outlook support and a pre-bundled license of SuSE Linux Enterprise Server.

Customers Benefit

As a result, Novell said customers benefit from reduced costs and increased productivity as GroupWise 7 manages mission-critical collaboration functions.

“The new features in GroupWise 7 combined with the migration tools and incentives we are offering make it the ideal collaboration platform,” said David Patrick, vice president and general manager of Linux, Open Source Platforms and Services for Novell.

“Customers are often afraid to disrupt their day-to-day business to make a change, but GroupWise 7 makes migration from Microsoft Exchange or Lotus Notes extremely easy, technically and financially.”

Interactive Media Strategies vice president for collaborative research Paul Ritter told LinuxInsider that with its latest version, Novell is attempting to grab market share from rivals in the online collaboration space, particularly IBM Lotus and Microsoft.

“There’s enough room in the marketplace for Novell to gain some ground, but the company needs to pursue a strategy similar to Microsoft’s,” Ritter said. “Novell needs to aggressively partner with vendors to achieve integration and group collaboration into other enterprise applications and business processes.”

No Piecemeal Solutions

Specifically, Ritter said Novell should seek out partners that will help its applications become a core part of a fully integrated communications and collaboration platform. These types of comprehensive solutions, he said, are now beginning to take hold with IT professionals in large organizations. In other words, the trend is toward fully integrated solutions rather than a piecemeal approach.

“The market is becoming more aware that having all of these kinds of technologies linked together so that workers can have one-click access to launch collaborative sessions, like instant messaging and video conferencing. … Companies realize the most significant productivity gains with these types of solutions,” Ritter said.

Consumers Want Connections

Novell said customers worldwide are beginning to deploy the new solution.

Fred Candelaria, supervisor of WAN Engineering for Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, said GroupWise 7 security enhancements give his organization more options for configuring how it protects its collaboration system. “GroupWise 7 will enable us to keep our users connected regardless of location, device or platform, while maintaining a very low total cost of ownership,” he said.

Roger Fenner, infrastructure services manager for Comair, a wholly owned subsidiary of Delta Air Lines, said GroupWise 7 maintains the reliability and security he has come to expect and rely upon from Novell and GroupWise, while adding features that allow his organization to offer greater flexibility and capability to our user community. “We’ve been waiting for the amazing features and broad-based support that only GroupWise 7 offers,” he said.

But analysts are not impressed with the “amazing features.”

“Bundling the solution with Linux may help Novell’s cause,” Ritter said. “Beyond that, there are not a lot of features that are new or different in GroupWise 7 as compared to other products in the marketplace.”

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