"Google Apps account infrastructure transition complete"


Subject: Google Apps account infrastructure transition complete

Dear Google Apps administrator,

We recently transitioned your organization to the new infrastructure for Google Apps accounts, a change that makes over 60 additional Google applications like Google Places, Google Reader, Picasa Web Albums and AdWords accessible with Google Apps accounts.

What does this email mean?

First of all, if you're a Google Apps user, and you received the message (continued below), you likely won't notice anything different in your online experience. Google made "the Transition" [capital mine] for you automatically, and it should be totally transparent to you. They started this upgrade to Apps about a year ago, making it system-wide in the fall, and they're finalizing it now.

The substance of the Transition is that you can now log into any of Google's 60+ services — YouTube, Maps, Reader, Picasa, Latitude — with your Google Apps ID (e.g. you@yourdomain.com). Log into one service, and you're connected to all of them. It unifies the experience, and your access to all the various cloud resources. It also makes sharing and collaborating between users within your organization (all-y'all@yourdomain.com) somewhat easier. 

In Maps and Latitude, when I go to share, my domain users didn't pop up as they do in Calendar or Docs. So, while I'll still have to type in specific email addresses to collaborate with, my users will have a space on Google in which to keep content related to my business, separate and apart from their own personal Gmail material.

In larger terms, it's pretty cool that Google has put this amount of work toward maturing an increasingly popular service, given that many businesses are still using the free version. The recent upgrade is a broad stroke, and one that puts Apps waaay out in front of any other "cloud" service. Adding to its versatility is the Google Apps Marketplace, where you can find third-party services to add to your Apps suite, giving your users access with the same ID, and you a single place to manage user accounts for all your cloud apps.

Contrast this with Apple's long and sordid history of cloud initiatives. I am, in fact, hopeful and optimistic about iTunes Match, and the photo-syncing facet of iCloud. Credit should certainly be handed to Apple for creating full-featured, if anemic, online subscription services long before "cloud" became tech parlance. But as the Ars Technica article relates, Apple never quite nailed performance or, in the case of MobileMe, botched the whole job and soured the world against their service. 

Even after they got their act together with MobileMe, they never took it to the next level of functionality or, God help us, speed. MobileMe never became a collaborative MobileUs. I don't anticipate iCloud offering a whole lot more functionality than they've already announced. Apple sells to indiviuals not to businesses. Dropbox, for example, shouldn't start packing up their toys to go home. Apple, of a nature, aren't going to run a service as open and flexible as Dropbox.

Apple's shiny new data center ain't for nuthin', however, and I want to hope that all that storage has to be for our personal media collections, going beyond music to movies and other video. It's a fair bet that iCloud will beat the music clouds recently announced by Google and Amazon, unless the other guys make your media available on all mobile devices, including iOS. 

Vive la Transition!

Continue forwarded message:

To determine which of these additional applications your users should be able to access, click “Organizations & users”, then “Services” from your Control Panel. Your Control Panel can be accessed at https://www.google.com/a/cpanel/yourdomain.com

Note: This email confirms that your transition is complete! No further action is required on your part, and your users will see a notification about this change the first time they sign in after the update. To learn more about how this change may impact your users, visit our Help Center article.

If you have additional questions about this transition, we encourage you to explore our Help Center documentation for administrators and for end-users.

The Google Apps Team

Posted via email from J2 Tech Blog