Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Is Google ready to take on the enterprise market?

Is Google ready to take on the enterprise market?

Google recently announced that it would start charging small companies for using its business applications.  This signals a move that Google is starting to look beyond the consumer and is now ready to tackle the enterprise market.

Over the last five years, Google has added a lot of features to its cloud-based productivity suite Google Apps, and has rolled out new services like Drive (storage) and the Compute Engine (cloud-based compute power). Gmail has also become a viable alternative to Outlook.

Still, enterprise makes up less than 4% of Google's revenue, and the company readily admits it builds products for consumers first, then takes features over to the enterprise later on. Meanwhile, while Google has gotten some big wins, Microsoft Exchange and Office remain steadfast corporate standards.

In 2013, we'll see if Google starts thinking enterprise first, with rapid product development and acquisitions of key enterprise startups, or if it remains a nice but relatively small side business for the company.

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