(The Hosting News) – Long regarded as the de-facto standard in hosted email systems for business and enterprise, Microsoft Exchange now has a major open-source commercially supported competitor – Zimbra Collaboration Suite. A VMWare company, Zimbra is making great progress in recent times in attempting to capture market share, and allows cost-effective collaboration systems to be made available to business and hosted email providers alike.
With support for mobile client connectors and synchronization (ActiveSync and iSync etc) in addition to having the ability to integrate with BlackBerry Enterprise Server (BES) – a mainstay of the modern mobile corporate workforce, a Zimbra-powered hosted email service allows business of all sizes to leverage the flexibility, power and ability of a fully featured collaboration solution.
Amongst its many features, a Hosted Zimbra service can include:
- Mobility – Over-the-air sync to iPhone, BlackBerry, Android, any mobile web browser.
- Desktop Sync – Use any email client like Microsoft Outlook, Thunderbird or maximize productivity with Zimbra Desktop.
- Sharing & Document Managment – Easily share files and folders throughout the organization and manage workflow in email.
- Instant Messaging – XMPP powered internal instant messaging integrated with zimbra with external federation supported.
Managed and hosted email services remain crucial to businesses today as they need to retain client data and communications accountability or the ability to fully audit e-mail access where required. With many hosting providers operating in primarily Linux-based environments, Zimbra now affords those hosts the opportunity to provide a commercial-grade Exchange alternative without also requiring a separate Windows-based deployment of servers, a major boost in general to an open platform hosting sector.
Microsoft Exchange is still the dominant system in hosted email solutions, with the ability to seamlessly integrate with many corporations existing IT infrastructure however with the current trend of moving such systems to the cloud and operating on a SaaS/IaaS model, a Zimbra solution can prove to be of high value, especially for use with newer corporate environments or those that are not heavily integrated with custom developments dependent on Exchange-specific technology.
Managed hosting services and hosted email powered by Zimbra is offered by Perigee Global, a managed hosting services provider based in New York, USA.