Google Apps and Google App Engine each continue to enjoy momentum with channel partners -- including emerging cloud services brokerages (CSBs). Three recent examples involve Cloudbakers, Cloud Sherpas and MediaAgility -- each of which continue to migrate customers to Google's (GOOG) SaaS and IaaS platforms.
First, a little background on Google Apps. It has been quite some time since Google offered updated channel partner figures, nore does the company disclose actual Google Apps revenues. But last I heard, the Google Apps channel partner program has attracted more than 6,000 resellers, and it allows those partners to manage end-customer billing -- a key requirement that Microsoft only partially addresses with Office 365 Open.
Separately, Google App Engine seems to be an emerging IaaS alternative to Amazon Web Services, Rackspace and Windows Azure.
The Google Apps vs. Microsoft Office 365 war remains fierce. Each side is claiming plenty of victories. But generally speaking, I think Google does a somewhat better job promoting its Google Apps partners that have a hand in customer wins. My three most recent examples:
- Cloudbakers: Imagination, a digital content marketing firm in Chicago, had deployed Office 365 but ran into problems involving server connection issues and Outlook crashes. Cloudbakers, a local Google Apps reseller, ultimately helped the company to jump platforms. Help tickets have decreased by 50 percent and the company expects to save $24,000 per year in help desk and downtime issues.
- Cloud Sherpas: In April 2013, BDP International, a global transportation company with operations in 115 cities throughout the world, migrated 3,600 employees from Microsoft Exchange to Google Apps. The Exchange environment had been three to four times more expensive to buy and maintain. Cloud Sherpas managed the migration and continues to position itself as the world's leading CSB.
- MediaAgility: Minyanville Media, a New York-based financial media company, recently migrated its flagship Buzz & Banter app to Google App Engine -- gaining better reliability and automatic demand-based scaling of the application. The company consulted with its strategic technology partner, MediaAgility, to drive the move.
To Google's credit, each of those case studies has surfaced on the Google Enterprise Blog in recent weeks. Google has a rather incredible track record promoting partners on that blog -- quite a feat, considering a lot of channel partners still don't have a good feel for Google's partner commitments.
I'm not suggesting that Google Apps leads Office 365 in the IT channel. But when Microsoft and Windows fans dismiss Google's channel efforts, I can't help to think they are ignoring a company with serious channel momentum.