If you read some of the online computing sites, you will already know that Microsoft – already involved in a project to take-over Yahoo to counter the Google threat and improve its Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) credentials (see post) – is making moves to address the SaaS market opportunity. SME offerings of SaaS services got a lukewarm response from the blogosphere but its data-center projects will, if nothing else, be welcomed by the construction industry.
Computerworld and InternetNews.com, for example, reports Microsoft has opened up its hosted versions of SharePoint and Exchange to medium-sized and small companies, as it tries to take advantage of the demand for software as a service. And today I read, in ComputerWeekly, that Microsoft is planning to offer a ‘cloud computing service’ to allow businesses to buy computing power on demand over the internet.
On the former, SaaS bloggers’ reactions have not all been positive; Phil Wainewright, for example, writes: Microsoft disappoints on SaaS. Didn’t you see it coming? while TechCrunch’s Michael Arrington moans: I Really Hope Microsoft Has More Than This.
On the latter, Nicholas Carr picked up the rumour yesterday – read his Rumor: Microsoft set for vast data-center push – where he initially focuses on the “totally over the top” boost this will give to the construction industry (hurray!): construction of about two dozen data centres, each covering about 500,000 square feet or more. Wow! Let’s hope they use SaaS-based collaboration technologies to deliver them!