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Auditing Vendor Sees More Demand for Google Apps than Office 365

Hardly a week goes by when Google or Microsoft doesn't announce a key win for their respective cloud-based productivity services. While analysts say it's premature to declare a winner, Google Apps continues to gain ground on Microsoft's Office 365.

While none of the major IT researchers have published data, Gartner back in April indicated Google Apps is gaining ground on Office 365. Under what it described as a narrowed analytical framework, Gartner analysts on a webcast suggested Google Apps had anywhere from a 33 to 50 percent share of the cloud productivity app market.

Gartner hasn't published any formal research nor has Forrester Research. "The number of customer acquisition announcements both vendors make and the inquiries that we do on this topic don't really give a clear picture as to which is up, either," analyst T.J. Keitt said in an e-mail. Pointing to a video Forrester posted earlier this year on how to choose between the two, Keitt said "We're too early to declare a winner and loser in this competition."

In a nod to Google, auditing software provider BeyondTrust this week unveiled a version of its PowerBroker Auditor for Google Apps. The company said the free tool available for download is designed to simplify the manual task of making configuration and administrative changes for security and compliance reporting.

When I asked if there's a version for Microsoft's Office 365, the company said that will follow in the future. "Customer feedback indicated that Google Apps was being widely deployed, more so at this point than other online collaboration solutions, so we went with that feedback and released support for Google Apps first," said Brad Hibbert, BeyondTrust's vice president for product strategy and operation, in an e-mail. The company says it has 5,000 customers.

Making this more noteworthy is the fact that BeyondTrust lists itself as a Microsoft Gold Partner. BeyondTrust doesn't have a partnership with Google, according to the list of partners on its Web site. However that's in the works, according to Hibbert. "We've begun the partnering process with Google as a result of this product development," he noted.

Is your organization forsaking Office or Office 365 in favor of Google Apps? Drop me a line at [email protected]

 

Posted by Jeffrey Schwartz on 08/09/2013 at 3:06 PM


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