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NEXT: Google Apps
The biggest news this year about Google Collaboration isn't about what application it's offering, but about what application it's not offering: Google Wave.
While the online search, tech and tools giant continues to offer Google Apps with collaboration functions in Google Docs, Google Presentation and Google Spreadsheet, among others, Google Wave was a somewhat bold beta test/experiment into realtime collaboration, file sharing and group chat. While the site still works, it will soon be shut down -- the result, Google said earlier this year, of somewhat disappointing adoption. The company said it would find ways to incorporate the technology and functionality of Wave into other offerings in the future.
The failure of Wave to catch on, it appears, had less to do with the impressive technology that Google provided than with the collaboration use patterns that have been the default habits for the past several years. But in the here and now, Google appears to be more focused in other areas such as its forthcoming Chrome operating system than with keeping up with the likes of Microsoft or Novell.
In terms of pure collaboration for enterprises, Google Apps does not offer the robust features and functions of SharePoint (on premise or online), and its far-flung offerings like Google Buzz, Google Chat and Google Groups do not offer the cohesion that Novell is showing with Vibe.
NEXT: IBM LotusLive