Microsoft Targets Web-Based Services For Enterprises - CRN and VARBusiness

The fog around Microsoft's Live (web-based/SaaS application) strategy is finally is starting lift. Microsoft now offers customers three ways to access: on-premise, hosted in the Microsoft cloud, or hosted by a partner like i3 Business Solutions. Click the link above to read the whole story, or read an excerpt below-- with i3's President Mike Ritsema quoted with comment about the announcement:

"...The distinction between Live and Online was made in response to larger businesses asking for better articulation of the vendor's services strategy, Kelley said.

Online services are designed for organizations of 5,000 users or more that have more advanced technology needs, says Kelly. "It's all about making life easier for IT decision makers with compliance, data control, and reliability services," he said.

Within the Online umbrella, Microsoft is delivering so-called 'finished' services, or complete end to end solutions that end users can use immediately; 'attached' services, which are added to existing on-premise deployments, and "building blocks," a service oriented architecture-based approach for developers that want to build applications that take advantage of services being hosted by Microsoft, according to Kelly.

In the partner-hosted model, solution providers sell services through monthly subscriptions to end users, and pay licensing fees to Microsoft through the Service Provider Licensing Agreement (SPLA).

"We continue to see the opportunity for partners to host our technology and provide that to customers. In fact, many customers are specifically asking for that," said Kelly.

Mike Ritsema, president of i3 Business Solutions, a Microsoft Gold partner in Grand Rapids, Mich., isn't thrilled by Microsoft's new services model, but understands why the vendor is moving in this direction.

"I don't like it, because I'd prefer a pure business partner play and channel strategy around services. MS becoming a competitor is a concern for me, but it's the reality," said Ritsema. "

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Published with permission from Source.