Google Apps Takes On Corporate Messaging With Postini

Google storage compliance

Postini, an email service provider with 35,000 business customers and 10 million users globally, was bought by Google July 19. "With Postini, we saw the potential to deliver a more complete hosted solution for businesses of all sizes," Dave Girouard, vice president and general manager of Google Enterprise, said in a statement.

The move Wednesday is the latest in a series of forays Google is making into the enterprise space. Google Apps Premier Addition goes up against established enterprise messaging services, most prominently Lotus Notes from IBM and Microsoft Exchange. Google Apps includes a suite of services, such as GMail, Docs, Calendar and GTalk, which are available for business use. However, with Postini, Google Apps Premier Edition will now have a large customer base from which to draw.

Joe Vaccone, president of Excel Micro, of Folsom, Pa., solution provider and one of the largest Positini resellers with more than 10,000 business accounts and 100,000 users, said many of his customers expressed interest in Google applications since the search giant bought Postini. "It's exciting for us that we can sell Postini with these Google services," Vaccone said. "We're seeing people flocking to Google because of the many services Google can offer."

Conversely, Google messaging services alone previously scared off some potential customers, he added. "You wouldn't know who to call for help at Google," he said. "They didn't offer the level of services like we do."

Sponsored post

Google told Excel Micro and other partners Wednesday that more products and services were coming in the future. "We want our valued resellers to know that we will continue to honor our existing agreements with you and respect your existing customer relationships," Google said in a statement to Excel Micro. "We want to encourage you to continue selling Postini solutions per our existing agreements. In addition, we plan to open the door for you to offer new Google products to your customers and prospects."

Vaccone said Google Apps Premier Edition has a chance to make significant inroads on Microsoft and IBM. "If they can do everything Microsoft Exchange is doing, why spend thousands of dollars buying Exchange? By outsourcing your email, it's one less thing for the company's IT staff to manage."

Dana Gardner, principal analyst of Interarbor Solutions, also said Google's messaging suite may be well positioned for corporate use. "Google has been aggressive in developing its email applications. They've been successful in organizations like universities. Now, it's logical they are getting better security into this type of account as they point toward SMBs and enterprises. They are able to offer more and more services, so they may see more success."

The new features added to Google Apps Premier Edition allow customers to configure spam and virus filtering, customized to each business user. Customers can centrally manage content policy based on business policy rules, and they can also create and manage user group policies.

Google Apps Premier Edition also adds an email routing feature that lets organizations use Google Apps along with another email application. Google also increased email storage to 25 GB per user, more than doubling the capacity of inboxes to from 10 GB per user.