When Google acquired Postini back in 2007, their objective was to both improve their internal messaging technologies and help develop new, value-oriented projects. One of the most noteworthy projects of that nature has now been completed and released to the market. Its objective is to create a backup system for companies who are using on-premise messaging systems, helping them avoid expensive downtime or server failure issues.
The service is called “Google Message Continuity,” and is powered by both Google Apps and the Postini technology. Its primary target is companies using Microsoft Exchange, the premier on-premise message hosting technology. Continuity automatically synchronizes all the prominent data found within the exchange hosting and inputs it into clone accounts in Google Apps.
These clone accounts are in many ways identical to the Exchange accounts — they have the same calendar information, same messages, same contacts, and even the same username and password. In actual interface and functionality, however, these clones function as Enterprise Google Apps accounts, and include all the built-in features of Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Contacts, and other apps as enabled by the administrator.
Google services in this sector seem to be two-fold. First, this product, while affordable, doesn’t come for free. It costs twenty-five dollars per year for each user that’s using the synchronization and backup. Thus, Google is able to gain an additional revenue stream while providing a valuable service that prevents sudden halts in company productivity.
However, Google hasn’t had any issues in admitting that this is an excellent promotional opportunity. During the times when users must utilize the clone accounts, they will get accustomed to (and possibly enamored with) the features. Google also reminds subscribers that, while moving exclusively to Apps is by no means necessary, the data is already present in the accounts and a switchover would be an incredibly simple process.