UKLUG Liveblogging – Keynote Speaker – Kevin Cavanaugh

I’m at the fabulous UK Lotus User Group (UKLUG) event in Hatfield today, organised by Warren Elsmore and Darren Adams – great job guys…

Kevin Cavanaugh is delivering the keynote session…

Kevin has been in the job for just 6 weeks, not been home yet! Very excited at the new role, very focused on Lous collaborative message.

Running presentation in Notes 8 client.

Review of 2007. Quickr and Connections released on time in June 2007.

However, Kevin is most excited about Notes/Domino8. At Lotusphere promised ND8 in Summer 2007, and have delivered on that promise – not common in this Industry.

Quotes from InfoWorld – “easier to use, more attractive and better than MS Outlook”. Pretty happy with that 😉 “IBM may be in the unprecedented position if getting a second chance at knocking off longtime market leader MS Outlook”

Thrilled at the customer interest in ND8 – double the number of downloads in the first two weeks than Notes7 had.

Kevin shows some ISVs that are making good use of composite applications. In particular, showing Totvs ERP sytem from Brazil, using productivity editors and composite application technology to build a great ERP solution. Announced earlier this month in Sao Paulo.

Hosted Lotus Notes (part of IBM Applications on Demand), announced just two weeks after Notes8. Builds on the best practice of IBM Global Services to deliver SMB-centric hosted environment.

Lotus Symphony (slogan of Be Free. Work Smart). Kevin compares it to the original Lotus Symphony product, costing $1100 at launch! Uses ISO standard Open Document Format, and IBM offers optional fee-based support services. 98,000 downloads at 5pm last evening (have probably broken the 100,000 mark by now). Kevin mentions the WSJ and NYT articles that appeared on the morning of the launch. The WSJ article also shows MS vs Lotus market share graph, created from data from IDC. Last year IBM gained 1%, MS lost 2% (probably to open source and web-based free alternatives). “Definitely a shift going on in the marketplace.”

As part of the launch event, IBM bought every ad on CNN.com – this was very successful according to the stats. Important aspect is that these are Lotus-branded, product-specific ads and are targeted at end-users and executives, not the usual IT crowd.

Notes & Domino 8.0.1 – no confirmation from Kevin but probably will be released at Lotusphere. Kevin goes through new features and improvements as previously announced, including new DWA client, including low-bandwidth version, mail quota gauge, Citrix support etc. Kevin goes into more detail on the free Notes Traveller push client for Windows Mobile. He points out that the software element of a mobile email solution is a small part of overall cost (data plan, user support etc.), therefore it makes sense to give choice and flexibility to customers to choose the right solution.

Sametime 8 – As we know, will be split into Sametime Entry (the low cost simple IM/presence version as bundled with Notes 8), Sametime Standard (including web conferencing, screen sharing etc,) and Sametime Advanced (a platform for applications for Sametime). Why Sametime Entry when it is bundled anyway with Notes? Because it gives Outlook/Exchange customers the ability to use Sametime in the same way as Notes customers do. This is a theme – just because a customer uses Outlook/Exchange, it doesn’t mean that Lotus can’t improve their collaboration in other ways…

Quickr – will begin to see this as the front end to collaborative content applications. Quickr Content Integrator will be a tool to migrate information out of Sharepoint and Exchange Public Folde
rs, but will also support co-existence and ongoing interoperability with MS repositories.

Connections – a huge o
pportunity for IBM. Customers are coming round to the idea of using Social Software inside their business, though there are still question marks about the use of Facebook etc. during working time.

Lotus Forms – name change, plus the important change of no longer needing a viewer.

Kevin says he is delighted to now have the job to choose Product versions, so Notes/Domino8.5 will be available late ne
xt year with Notes/Domino9 due in 2009.

Looking forward to more announcements at Lotusphere – there is still more to come!

Stuart McIntyre is a Senior Strategist at Fostering Community Limited. He curates a number of product-focused news sites, is a lapsed podcaster, founded the Social Connections user group and regularly speaks at conferences and events. This blog represents his own slightly-eccentric and usually-controversial opinions!