Fredrik Malmborg just posted an article (in Swedish) on his blog about how the Swedish government have been moving several departments (taxes, defence, etc) from an IBM/Lotus platform to the Microsoft stack. He noticed that a certain executive with sales responsibility for public sector at a big software company became Secretary of State (not the same as "Secretary of State" in the US) right before the government asked a certain software company (guess which one!) to write the specification for the new system. Coincidentally that same company (Microsoft) was then choosen to deliver the solution. IBM was never offered to even compete.
Here are some arguments used in the studies presented to the government why the switch should be done:
* Outlook is used privately by many users and thus have a higher acceptance.
* The similar interface improves the user experience.
I know that IBM does not believe in those arguments, but the customers and the ones in charge (may it be politicians, civil servants or a CEO) buy that argument. Line, hook and sinker... Especially if the persons in change are among the ones that use Outlook at home (since it come bundled with many versions of Office). I personally know several people who use Outlook (not Outlook Express!) at home for their private mail, as they can easily aggregate several mail accounts into one client. I been building/rebuilding a number of computers for friends lately, and the request to use Outlook came up several times.
I believe that IBM should create a "IBM Mail" client, with support for POP/IMAP/SMTP as well as direct support for Gmail, Hotmail and Yahoo mail. Why not add Domino and Exchange support, to allow users to connect to work, without installing the full Notes client?
The client must be able to aggregate mail from multiple sources, and send mail using any of those services. When you compose a new mail, there should be a dropdown where you select Gmail, your ISP service or Yahoo mail (depending on what you have setup), the same way as it works on most smart phones today. If you reply to a mail, the service is was received on should be default, e.g. if the mail was received through one of my Gmail accountrs, the reply should be sent using the same account.
This client should look like Notes mail, contain a calendar, to-do, journal, perhaps an RSS feed and support for widgets. Why not throw in a couple of simple but useful applications? Show that "IBM Mail is not just mail". Strip away as much as possible when it comes to complicated menus, settings, etc. The properties/settings in the Notes client causes any normal user to get a headache instantly... Make it easy and quick to setup, and make it available as a free download, without any annoying registration. Most of all, make the client fast.
The market perception will not change overnight, but in the long run, showing that "IBM Mail" looks modern and has the functionality people need will benefit Notes.
We are the IBM Champions
Wed, Dec 3rd 2014 7:39p Karl-Henry Martinsson This morning I received a mail from IBM telling me that for the second year I was selected as one of the 96 IBM Champions. Last year I was very surprised to be selected and to be in the company of so many of the experts in the ICS/Lotus community that I for years looked up to […] [read] Keywords: ibm
Happy 25th birthday, Lotus Notes!
Thu, Nov 27th 2014 12:45p Karl-Henry Martinsson Today is the 25th birthday of Lotus Notes. It is the program responsible for me moving to the US, as well as being my career for the last close to 18 years. So, as you can see in the picture above, I am toasting this amazing software in IBM blue colors, courtesy of Curaçao Blue. […] [read] Keywords: ibm
Verizon and AT&T are tracking all your online activity
Fri, Oct 31st 2014 2:45p Karl-Henry Martinsson As you may have read lately, Verizon have implemented a system that adds an HTTP header item in all web communication that originates from mobile phones on their network. Each phone/user get their own unique ID, which is transmitted to every website being visited (except if SSL is used), no matter if you have privacy/anonymous surfing […] [read] Keywords: mobile
Nokia is dead
Wed, Oct 22nd 2014 8:05a Karl-Henry Martinsson Microsoft is taking a page out of IBM’s playbook and is killing off the Nokia brand. Future models of the smart phones in the Lumia series will be named Microsoft Lumia. Last month the Nokia Lumia 735 and 830 were launched, and they will probably be the last phones branded as Nokia. The mobile division of Nokia will […] [read] Keywords: ibm
Microsoft skipping Windows 9 – jumps to Windows 10
Tue, Sep 30th 2014 12:40p Karl-Henry Martinsson Microsoft unveiled the next version of Windows at a press event in San Francisco today. Surprisingly the successor to Windows 8 and 8.1 will not be called Windows 9 as everyone expected. Instead Microsoft jumps straight to Windows 10. One reason for this, according to Microsoft, is that the new operating system is such a big leap […] [read] Keywords: microsoft
#ThrowbackThursday – Worst Practives at Connect 2013
Thu, Sep 18th 2014 6:05a Karl-Henry Martinsson Paul Mooney and Bill Buchan returns with a brand new Worst Practices at IBM Connect 2013. This session alone is almost worth the cost to attend Lotusphere/Connect/ConnectED. There is a slight skip towards the end, when I had to switch batteries. Otherwise you have the whole session, including the warm-up performance. [read] Keywords: ibm