Friday, February 29, 2008

Google Sites - Challenging Portals

Today I saw the announcement of "Google Sites" in my mailbox. I use Google Apps services for few of my domains. Just if you are not aware of what Google Apps is, Google Apps is a collaboration platform that can be subscribed by the companies instead any installation locally. In other words, it is kind of hosted portal for an enterprise. It provides quite a few important collaboration features like Email, Calendar, Task, Docs etc. Now the latest addition to this set is Google Sites.

Google Sites is a tool for quickly creating new websites and sharing information. Here is how Google defines it -
"Google Sites is the easiest way to make information accessible to people who need quick, up-to-date access. People can work together on a Site to add file attachments, information from other Google applications (like Google Docs, Google Calendar, YouTube and Picasa), and new free-form content. Creating a site together is as easy as editing a document, and you always control who has access, whether it's just yourself, your team, or your whole organization. You can even publish Sites to the world. " The more information can be found at Google Sites help at http://www.google.com/a/help/intl/en/users/sites.html.

Now with the announcement of Google Sites, I believe that Google has started challenging Portal market. I think, Google is soon going to be the the free hosted sharepoint available to all. Though Google Apps is still at initial stages so we have some time where we see that Google started grabbing some portal market. I personally see that initially it will start affecting open source portals and small portal vendors before taking over biggies like Microsoft and IBM. We will soon see Google Apps catching fast in at least SME segment.

Where do you think Google Apps is heading? Do you also think that it is going to challenge portal market (especially collaborative portals)?