After my own posting I am going to post a series of comments and quotes on IBM Connect 2014 in the upcoming days, which I find in particular interesting. Here is the first one covering the Watson Group and IBM Mail Next.:
The formation of the Watson Group is a step towards commercializing what has, up until now, been a science experiment. It promises to create new capabilities and applications in medicine, finance, customer service, and many more industries. More importantly, Watson Foundations, the development stack and APIs for Watson, will allow developers to embed little bits of Watson intelligence in a host of applications. The possibilities for enhancing existing applications far outweigh the potential for Watson-only applications.
The news that received the most attention amongst attendees was the announcement of IBM Mail Next. A fusion of email and social networking, the yet to be released cloud-based software has a user interface that looks more like Google Plus than typical email applications. It is designed to allow easy pivots from email to enterprise social networks and refocuses the communication experience on the interactions between people.
IBM Mail Next is an example of the ongoing convergence of enterprise social networks, email and other communications applications. Google is attempting the same thing with the Google Plus/Gmail/Hangouts suite. Microsoft is as well with Office365 plus Yammer, SharePoint and Lync. The road to adoption may be tougher for IBM though given its conservative customer base. To placate them, IBM will continue to produce the traditional IBM Notes email experience for the foreseeable future.
The expansion of — and for many the very existence of — the IBM Design Studio also sent a positive signal about IBM’s commitment to the benefits of consumerization for enterprise software. IBM is investing heavily in pure design with an emphasis on the total user experience and not simply user interface. The IBM Mail Next design shows just what IBM can do with IBM Design Studio concepts. Hopefully this design philosophy will find its way into all IBM products.
Check out the whole posting covering all the other announcements of IBM Connect. Great summary by Tom Petrocelli, Research Director, Enterprise Social, Mobile, and Cloud Applications at Neuralytix.