Google has introduced a new service called Google Message Continuity that syncs on-premises email platforms such as Microsoft Exchange (2003 and 2007) with Gmail. The basic idea behind such service is to act as a backup solution by replicating email accounts hosted on Microsoft Exchange Servers in the cloud, using Gmail, Calendar and Contacts. So in case of a server failure or a server downtime (due to maintenance etc.), the employees could sign into Google accounts and access their regular work e-mail through Google’s interface.This service is being offered by Google’s corporate e-mail service Postini, which also offers security and archiving services.
The Gmail and Microsoft Exchange servers will be constantly synchronized with each other. This will allow the user to switch from one environment to another without losing any up-to-date information. For this service, Google will charge $25 per user per year for new customers or $13 per user per year for current Postini customers .
Many IT managers have started to realize the potential of cloud based offerings and Google Message Continuity, in a way gives them an opportunity to straddle the line between on-premise and cloud-based communications. This can be seen as a Google’s strategy to convince the enterprise customers to think about Google cloud offerings. Since the Exchange server and Gmail will always be in sync with each other, it will also help organization to deploy Google Apps, without stopping their regular email systems, thus easing the transition process.
I feel it is a smart service from Google. According to research data, a company with more than 500 person strength could lose nearly $90,000 annually due to email-outages. The study also shows that Microsoft Exchange users experience an average of 2.5 hours of e-mail outages every month and that 72% of companies must deal with an unplanned e-mail outage annually. In such cases, Google Message Continuity could provide the resilience and reliability of Gmail as a backup solution for Exchange. The combination of On-premises service and Gmail will make sense for such enterprises.
What do you think about Google Message Continuity? Let us know.