Brian Riggs
Brian is a member of Ovum's Enterprise team, tracking emerging trends, technologies, and market dynamics in the unified communications and...
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Brian Riggs | August 05, 2010 |


Google, Communications, and Collaboration: Looking for Signs of Commitment

Google, Communications, and Collaboration: Looking for Signs of Commitment With Google Wave's demise, I'm no longer looking to Google for the next big thing in the communications and collaboration space. What I'm looking for is commitment to the market for communications and collaboration solutions.

With Google Wave's demise, I'm no longer looking to Google for the next big thing in the communications and collaboration space. What I'm looking for is commitment to the market for communications and collaboration solutions.

I'm not overly distraught about the ...early death of Google Wave. I personally found it complicated and awkward, in no way intuitive as a means of collaborating with co-workers on a particular project and much too narrow in the sorts of processes it could help streamline. But I've never been much of an early adopter and assumed all the question marks were floating only over my head as I tried to noodle out ways my company could benefit from using Google Wave. (Google Voice and Google Docs, on the other hand, I've found wonderfully intuitive and at various times useful in my work life.) ...Tom Nolle had much clearer ideas when it came to use cases. He proposed that healthcare organizations create patient chart Waves that could "link to the tests that had been taken, doctors' and nurses' notes, and even real-time telemetry if the patient was being monitored continuously." And by combining it with Robots and Gadgets, Tom speculated that Wave could help propel Google into the unified communications market. Wave was clearly interesting to some, and has been ...adopted by a number of businesses thinking outside of the box when it comes to intra-company collaboration. But the adoption rate was clearly not high enough and this week Google pulled the plug on further development of Wave.

As an industry analyst who tracks software and solutions that businesses use for communications, I'm often asked about Google's role in the industry. I generally respond that ...Google Enterprise is focused mainly on search tools and cloud-based office productivity apps, not on comms and collaboration. But don’t discount Google, my response continues. The company has a number of communications-oriented products--Google Voice, Google Wave, and a Skype-like internet voice service that came courtesy of its acquisition of Gizmo5 late last year. These are mainly focused on consumers, but trends in the consumerization of IT could easily propel usage of these and other Google products in the enterprise as well.

What I am in fact distraught about is Google's generally cavalier approach to the collaboration and communications market. It acquired two developers of voice and video codecs, GIPS and On2, but provided no insight into what it plans to do with these companies and their technology. It acquired Gizmo5, but closed its Skype-like internet telephony service to new subscribers and, again, provided no insight into its plans for the service. It launched Wave in a hullabaloo of marketing hype, and closed it down a year later when people did not flock to it in droves. Not commenting on intentions and future plans is a hallmark for this company. But it will in no way endear itself to businesses counting their communications and collaboration options.


April 19, 2017

Now more than ever, enterprise contact centers have a unique opportunity to lead the way towards complete, digital transformation. Moving your contact center to the cloud is a starting point, quick

April 5, 2017

Its no secret that the cloud offers significant benefits to enterprises - including cost reduction, scalability, higher efficiency, and more flexibility. If your phone system and contact center are

March 22, 2017

As today's competitive business environments push workforces into overdrive, many enterprises are seeking ways of streamlining workflows while optimizing productivity, business agility, and speed.

April 20, 2017
Robin Gareiss, president of Nemertes Research, shares insight gleaned from the firm's 12th annual UCC Total Cost of Operations study.
March 23, 2017
Tim Banting, of Current Analysis, gives us a peek into what the next three years will bring in advance of his Enterprise Connect session exploring the question: Will there be a new model for enterpris....
March 15, 2017
Andrew Prokop, communications evangelist with Arrow Systems Integration, discusses the evolving role of the all-important session border controller.
March 9, 2017
Organizer Alan Quayle gives us the lowdown on programmable communications and all you need to know about participating in this pre-Enterprise Connect hackathon.
March 3, 2017
From protecting against new vulnerabilities to keeping security assessments up to date, security consultant Mark Collier shares tips on how best to protect your UC systems.
February 24, 2017
UC analyst Blair Pleasant sorts through the myriad cloud architectural models underlying UCaaS and CCaaS offerings, and explains why knowing the differences matter.
February 17, 2017
From the most basics of basics to the hidden gotchas, UC consultant Melissa Swartz helps demystify the complex world of SIP trunking.
February 7, 2017
UC&C consultant Kevin Kieller, a partner at enableUC, shares pointers for making the right architectural choices for your Skype for Business deployment.
February 1, 2017
Elka Popova, a Frost & Sullivan program director, shares a status report on the UCaaS market today and offers her perspective on what large enterprises need before committing to UC in the cloud.
January 26, 2017
Andrew Davis, co-founder of Wainhouse Research and chair of the Video track at Enterprise Connect 2017, sorts through the myriad cloud video service options and shares how to tell if your choice is en....
January 23, 2017
Sheila McGee-Smith, Contact Center/Customer Experience track chair for Enterprise Connect 2017, tells us what we need to know about the role cloud software is playing in contact centers today.