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Today in Cloud

Both Google and Microsoft offer cloud-based productivity suites, and both companies are pushing hard to secure adoption in businesses, in government, and in education. Each suite has its own advantages, and it’s limitations, but the process of selecting the right product for each customer typically takes place behind closed doors. Every new customer therefore needs to start the evaluation process from scratch, missing out on the honest lessons learned by those who preceded them. As VentureBeat reports, UC Berkeley decided to do things a little differently. The university has published the assessment matrix it used in eventually selecting Google Apps. Google, it seems, was right for Berkeley. But that certainly doesn’t mean that Google is right for everyone. Institutions coming from an on-premise Exchange setup would probably be more inclined toward Microsoft, for example. Having been involved in supporting clients through a number of these evaluations, I can honestly say that we need to see more of these assessments published, and we need to see them coming from real customers, not carefully groomed ‘real customers’ that the vendors have nurtured and coddled until they write up their wholly unrealistic experiences of the process. Well done, Berkeley. And hopefully the university will revisit its original assessment once the deployment is live… and after it’s been running for 6 months or so.