At the annual Lotusphere conference, IBM introduced a new product offering called Lotus Foundations, which it says is aimed squarely at companies with five to 500 employees.
Lotus Foundations will consist of on-premise software servers primarily through channel partners. It will compete head-to-head with Microsoft's Small Business Server.
The first Foundations server, due to ship later this year, will offer a range of collaboration tools and other software including e-mail, file management, directory services, fire wall, backup and recovery, and office productivity software. Lotus executives briefed channel partners attending Lotusphere about the new product on Sunday.According to Lotus general manager Mike Rhodin, a Foundation communications server is also in the works, incorporating software from ISV partners. IBM is also developing a set of accompanying Web-hosted services, which is currently available in beta.
No pricing information was released, but the company says it plans to compete aggressively for market share.
Paul Mah is a writer and blogger who lives in Singapore, where he has worked for a number of years in various capacities within the IT industry. Paul enjoys tinkering with tech gadgets, smartphones, and networking devices.