Monday, April 14, 2008


Hey, there's a new merger alliance in town: + Google! Yep, the geeks at both companies have apparently been working hard to integrate Google Docs and Google Talk into the default CRM install.

All in all it looks pretty cool. IF you like Google Docs.

We all bitch and complain about the fact that Word, Excel and PowerPoint are the definition of bloatware - and there are lots of people who bitch that Google Docs is an underpowered "toy."

Now, Google Docs is OK for a lot of folks who don't live and breath Excel Macros and advanced functions. These knowledge working are sometimes put down as "...just sales and marketing personnel..." - insinuating that they aren't "real" users.

I beg to differ.

It's "these people" that have driven the adoption of Salesforce to begin with. It's these people that also use Google Docs on a regular basis. Having the two integrated together is a terrific idea - and one that they have done a great job in making as seamless as possible (video).

Just as I can imagine SOHO users rejoicing, I can just hear the laments of enterprise IT folks. Most enterprise IT folks have been working for years to narrow the number of vendors they work with - just to keep their heads above water. They want to lock down all desktops, control every packet over the network, make sure that they have a hand in every single instance of real or imagined "security" breaches, etc.

Which is good. that's their job. However, I'm betting that they're going to whine about the Google integration (I believe they have the option of turning it off altogether) - and the horrors of having people store their data in the cloud that they can't control.

They may have a point. However, I think it's the sales and marketing pukes (read: real users) who are going to dictate what they will and won't put up with. They WILL drive adoption.

Hopefully, that will spur Google to enhance and fix their Docs offering... I mean, hey - Zoho has a much more robust suite of (also free) of online applications. You would think that Google would take their online Docs products more seriously, now that they have a higher rate of adoption.

Google: ENOUGH with the "Beta" tag on Docs already! People use it. People are coming rely on it. And, oh yeah, another company is banking on that functionality for THEIR customers. Suspend the free gourmet meals for your entire campus for 3 days and you can pay for 100+ engineers to finish up and fix the damn thing already.

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