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Gartner Says Google's Gmail Is a Viable Alternative for Enterprises

Gartner has endorsed Google's Gmail service as a viable alternative to Microsoft's Exchange Online for enterprises with more than 5,000 employees.

The IT market researcher last week released a report called "Google Gmail Emerges as a Significant Threat to Microsoft in the Enterprise." The conclusions are noteworthy given the IT market researcher's clout with CIOs and the cutthroat rivalry between Microsoft and Google to win large enterprise cloud e-mail contracts.

"The road to its enterprise enlightenment has been long and bumpy, but Gmail should now be considered a mainstream cloud e-mail supplier," said Gartner research VP Matthew Cain in a statement.

While Gmail only accounts for about 1 percent of all enterprise e-mail, it has gained close to half the market for enterprise cloud e-mail, Cain noted. While Cloud e-mail only accounts for 3 to 4 percent of the overall enterprise e-mail installed base, Cain said Gartner is forecasting it will account for 20 percent of the e-mail market by 2016 and 55 percent by 2020.

The two competitors are the only ones gaining meaningful share, according to Gartner, noting that Novell GroupWise and IBM Lotus Notes/Domino are struggling. VMware has only recently started focusing its Zimbra cloud e-mail offering on the enterprise, Gartner added.

Posted by Jeffrey Schwartz on 09/20/2011 at 1:14 PM


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