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Cap Gemini twins with Google to punt online apps

Surprise pairing

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Cap Gemini is to start flogging Google Apps to its big corporate customers.

The package of office applications, Google Apps Premier Edition, includes spreadsheets, documents, calendar, Gmail, instant messenger and VoIP and is delivered as a service over the internet.

The software as a service (SaaS) market is predicted to grow rapidly - Gartner predicts 25 per cent annual compound growth until 2010.

The deal is a boost for Google's ambitions for the corporate market. Cap Gemini's backing helps Google be seen as a viable partner for large businesses - online applications have been seen as more attractive for small businesses which are focussed on costs and lack large IT departments.

Cap Gemini claims to support over one million desktops around the world. Having an alternative to Microsoft's Office package could help companies negotiate better deals with Redmond.

Cap Gemini will charge an annual licence fee for the package of applications as well as make money from integration and support.

The Google package can either be used as an outright replacement for Office or as a way for staff outside the office to work remotely.

Cap Gemini's press release(Pdf.) is here.®

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