I’ve been hearing about Office 365, so I signed up and am giving it a whirl. There’s much to talk about, but here’s some notable first impressions:
- BES is not supported. I don’t know if there’s a way to integrate BES servers into your environment, but MS doesn’t support BES. You can connect a Blackberry using IMAP. If you do that, you have to sync contacts and calendars manually. ActiveSync is fully supported.
- If you have Office 2010 Professional Plus installed and integrated with Office 365, you cannot use web apps. You have to use the installed apps and then save into Sharepoint.
- Office Web Apps are significantly stripped down versions of the Office Apps. They will probably be fine for most Office users, but this should be understood before making choices.
- Office Web Apps can be used in IE, Firefox, and Safari. I haven’t tested Chrome, but I’m sure that works too.
- It appears that Live Meeting has been rolled into Lync. That’s great!
- Lync can be accessed using OWA, but it’s a stripped down version.
- Sharepoint Workspace is probably the best way to connect into Sharepoint file stores, but it is possible to map drives into the file stores. I doubt this is advisable.
- It’s possible to pick individual Office 365 services instead of the designated “plans.” This ala carte ordering system allows you to spend as little as $2 a month for Lync only or as much as you’d like. The nice thing about this is that if you are already licensed for Office 2010 Professional Plus, you can pick plan E2 and add-on services thus saving $12 per user per month (for Office).
- Exchange Online Archiving is $4 per user per month. I think that’s a good price.
- Office 365 is a very powerful service. It enables organizations to quickly put up Exchange and Sharepoint environments in very little time. Office 365 can be about as simple or as complex as the user needs.
That’s pretty much it for now off the top of my head. I recommend organizations of all sizes become knowledgable in the capabilities of Office 365. It gives companies the ability to replace significant amounts of infrastructure with a very capable service. And for small companies it puts them on a level playing field with the big boys. I hate to say it, but once it’s rolled out, it requires very little back-end IT attention.
Office 365 Buyers Guide (in .xps format for some bizarre reason)
Posted in Blackberry, Cloud, Google, Internet, Internet Explorer, IT, Microsoft, Office, Office 365, Technology, Windows 7
Tagged ActiveSync, BES, blackberry, chrome, cloud, cloud computing, email, excel, Exchange, firefox, live meeting, lync, Microsoft, office, office 365, office web apps, outlook, powerpoint, safar, Sharepoint, word
I came across an article in Business Week today about the nightmare that is the Blackberry trackball. They are the #1 problem that leads to device replacements in my experience. According to Business Week, market research firm iSuppli predicts the trackball will be gone by 2013. I like the sound of that. But for now, if you’ve got a track ball problem in NYC, you might want to visit Tony Nafchti of fixyourberry.com.
I came across a very helpful website while troubleshooting Blackberry issues. It’s an extremely detailed Wiki about everything Blackberry. Check it out here:
Tom Yager of InfoWorld did an exhaustive review of the Blackberry 8300 and 8800, as well as several alternatives. This is a great resource for anyone considering an alternative to Blackberry.
The 8800 is finally out. It looks exactly like the Cingular model. I’m going to have one onsite tomorrow. Check it out!
Previous posts can be found here and here.
I was talking to someone in the know and I was told that the new Blackberry 8800 for T-Mobile will be released on Monday 4/23. I was also told that the Blackberry 8800 and the Blackberry Crimson are separate devices. I perpetuated the myth that they were the same device based on information I found here and here. I have since been told that the 8800 and the Crimson are not the same. The Crimson will be released this fall with a bunch of new features. The two I know about are GPS and Wifi. I was also told that the Crimson will have more of a rounded bottom.
The only feature I know about on the 8800 is that Telenav will be added.
The price for the 8800 will be:
- $550 with no contract
- $430 with 1 year contract
- $300 with 2 year contract
Keep an eye out for the 8800 starting next week. (Monday looks like a hard date.)
Kristin from Formerly Wiphey pointed out that a Blackberry 8800 is coming out for T-Mobile in April. I checked the info with my T-Mobile rep and Kristin is correct.
The new T-Mobile Blackberry 8800 is to be named the Blackberry Crimson 8800. This tip came from my T-Mobile rep who pointed me to the BB Hub website. The Crimson looks like a slick device. It’s bigger than the Pearl, and has all the new Blackberry features (camera, video, media card, etc.). It appears that the source for all of this info is The Boy Genius Report so make sure to check them out.
Life has weird ways of sending messages sometimes and this is one of those times. I posted something about the Blackberry 8800 a few days ago. The very next day I get a call from my Network Admin saying that he found a Cingular Blackberry 8800 laying on 6th Ave. (NYC). He asked if he should bring it up to the office. I said YES!!! I wanted to check it out and possibly return it to it’s owner.
Update: The Blackberry 8800 is NOT the Blackberry Crimson.
More on the other side of the split…
I don’t know how familiar you are with the Blackberry handheld device. I am too familiar with it. I’ve been around them since 2001 when my gadget-freak ex-boss had it sitting on his desk in a non-functional state. These days they are everywhere. It’s a matter of time before the Blackberry or a device like it is the only device used for computing. My company like many others has many Blackberry’s deployed. We have a mix of 7230, 7290, 8100 (Pearl), and 8700’s in the field. Our users are extremely pleased with them. We have more and more being installed every day.
One reason that we have an increasing number of Blackberry’s is that we have a few users THAT MUST HAVE THE LATEST DEVICE before they get the shakes. Yes, it’s an addiction and I am their dealer. So the 8800 is out and I am getting calls.
Fortunately for me and unfortunatly for our users this device is exclusive to Cingular and we are exclusive to T-Mobile. Multiple versions of this device will be released. One of them is called the Crimson and is for T-Mobile.
BTW, so you don’t have to ask, I carry the Blackberry 8700. I use it for voice and data. The first step to recovery is admitting you have a problem right? Right!