analysts, and even vendors themselves, see it emerging only gradually
in the enterprise. "It will be a draining of the pond," says Dave Girouard,
president of enterprise for Google. While more than 500,000
organizations of varying sizes use Google Apps, more than half use the
free version, according to Girouard.
Girouard says he is confident more and more companies will
get comfortable with letting go. "Over time as larger and larger
businesses decide to use Google Apps, there will be an upswing in the
revenue," he says. Right now, Google's strategy is to get as many
people and companies as possible comfortable using Google Apps. To that
end, the company is doing things like providing Google Apps for free to
universities. "We're generating millions of users for life," he says."
I think this is a great example of applying the new rules for the networked information economy to the Enterprise software industry. Clearly, Google understand these new rules better than any other company.
Strategy in the networked economy can seem counterintuitive:
on the web don’t charge users what the market would bear; they charge
as little as they could bear. That is how they maximize growth and
value for everyone in the network on top of the platforms they provide."
Google's "free" enterprise model is focused on maximizing growth and value from a networked strategy perspective.
Those that understand the new, sometimes counterintuitive rules will navigate the evolving networked edge economy to their significant advantage. Google is doing just that with their Enterprise Apps strategy.