Microsoft now looks at enabling easy access to its cost-effective productivity software. The company makes public the commercial availability of Microsoft Online Services in India. SMBs and enterprise customers can look forward to gaining access to Microsoft’s popular e-mail, collaboration, conferencing and productivity capabilities online.
With this latest launch, Microsoft offers users flexibility and choice of accessing and using software in a flexible model as part of Microsoft’s Software plus Services strategy. As a service or as a combination of both, users can take advantage of the service both on premise and off the Internet.
“In today’s competitive global market businesses need cost effective technology that allows flexibility and adds value to their organizations. The alternative delivery model of Microsoft Online Services will give businesses streamlined communication with high availability, comprehensive security and simplified IT management. Customers who have already started using the services are realizing savings from reduced hardware and software investments and are also benefitting from flexible payment models. In a nutshell, it allows them to do more with less”, mentioned Stephen Elop, President, Microsoft Business Group.
Products offered by the Microsoft Online Services portfolio include Exchange Online for e-mail and Office SharePoint Online for portals and collaboration. The latter is available separately or as a suite together with Office Live Meeting that can be used for conferencing. Microsoft Exchange Hosted Services and Microsoft Office Communications Online for instant messaging and presence are also on offer. The services will be available in India from November 7, 2009 onwards.
“No other company matches the flexibility and the power of choice that Microsoft provides—the power of choice to select how customers deploy software either on premise, in the cloud, or a combination of both, and, of course, the power of choice in how the software is licensed across a wide variety of options. The success of Microsoft Online Services depends on our partners, who will sell, customize and provide consulting, migration and managed services for customers”, commented Elop.
“While the smaller customer may choose to opt for the basic offering, in the mid-market upwards, partners have a tremendous opportunity in India, offering customers enterprise-class customized software delivered on a predictable, pay-as-you-go basis. In the end, both customers and partners win” he added.
The service was earlier launched as a trial version in July, 2009. Supposedly over 1800 customers in India are believed to have tried it out, experiencing elevated efficiency.
While the standard suite of Microsoft Online Services costs $10 /user/month, individual offerings can also be availed of. The Exchange Online Sstd costs $5 per user/month, SharePoint Online, Office Communications Online Std and for Office Live Meeting is priced at $5.25, $2.00 and $4.50 user/month respectively. Exchange Online Deskless Worker and SharePoint Online Deskless Worker can be acquired for $2 per user/month.