Maritz on… Lotus Notes

"It has the potential to compete across the board with our product line"

Microsoft VP Paul Maritz gave a cracking endorsement of Lotus Notes, saying that it competed with several Microsoft products, including Windows as a platform, and Exchnage as an email and groupware system, and that many things can be done in Notes that require Microsoft Office. "It's one of those products that has the potential to compete across the board with our product line," he said. Maritz volunteered that Jim Barksdale, Netscape's CEO, had told him that he regarded Notes as the most competitive product, and added that at the time that Lotus had articulated that it was intended that Notes would be a platform. Microsoft had found it hard to track the sales of Notes, partly because of the problem of market definition. Competing with Notes was difficult for Microsoft, Maritz naively said, because it didn't fit neatly into an Microsoft product strategy. Notes was used by Maritz as an example of how a small company (Iris Associates) could develop a program with around 30 people, and eventually sell it for around £3 billion to Lotus and then to IBM. Still, Maritz argument that it was inexpensive to develop software was contradicted by what Microsoft spent on its own development. ® Complete Register trial coverage

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