March 8, 2006 6:32 AM PST
Bloggers are gawking at alleged screenshots of Google's currently-under-construction calendar program.
According to Michael Arrington's Techcrunch blog, which is running the alleged screenshots, the new calendar is tightly integrated with Gmail. Features let people integrate with other calendar applications and share data. The calendar, allegedly dubbed CL2, also has a notification service that uses SMS (Short Message Service).
CL2 also apparently lets people create events that can be viewed on their calendars, or shown to the public, even to people not using the same calendar program.
While the product is still apparently well away from a launch, bloggers are excited about the possibility and are speculating whether the service is a prelude to bigger things for the company, and for online calendars.
Blog community response:
"CL2 looks to be a very strong product from Google (which has by no means been a given over the past year). Plus it seems to me that Google's much-anticipated Web Office Suite is well on the way to becoming a reality."
"I am getting more interested in events, in the structured microformats blogging sense of the word. Will there be 3.0 Edgeio-like 'events' players who crawl the Web for posts on MySpace, Spaces, Wordpress etc. (that are) tagged 'events'...Or will the leader be whoever builds the best centralized widget...Or will the MS/Apple default rule."
--Ben Barren, RSS'ing Down Under
"The space has gone from having no good solutions to having a number of good options in very quick time, and Google entering the market will make it even more competitive."
Posted by Margaret Kane
Google Calendar details leaked - the Web Office Suite is nigh!
Posted by Richard MacManus @ 1:50 am
TechCrunch has somehow obtained screenshots of the as yet unreleased Google Calendar, apparently called CL2. The leak came via Google's closed beta of about 200 participants. TechCrunch says that CL2 is a long way away from launch, but there are some meaty details here.
March 10, 2006 5:56 AM PST
Is Google prepping an office suite?
Google announced Thursday that it is acquiring Upstartle, maker of Web-based word processor Writely.
The move immediately fueled speculation that the search engine company may be working on its own version of an online office suite, which could compete with Microsoft's cash cow.
Rumors about the supposed suite have been percolating for some time, fueled in part by Google's partnership with Sun Microsystems and reports of a Google calendar program.
Google hasn't yet stated how it would incorporate the word processor, which is still in beta, into its other offerings. But bloggers were happy to speculate on their own.
Blog community response:
"Now buying Writely is in line with Google thinking of using browser for everything. I mean an online word processor, and online excel spread sheet make a lot more sense than making people switch to OpenOffice."
"So this is how I see it working. Google Desktop is used to synchronise your local drive with your GDrive (with Lighthouse probably being the tool that you use to decide who can access and share what data). If your working on your regular computer, click a document and it opens up into OpenOffice Writer. If your on a public workstation log into GDrive, click on the same document and it opens up in Writely."
"Still, Microsoft will likely view this as a much more direct attack -- especially coming so soon after Microsoft's new focus on its 'Live' strategy. Bet you can't wait to see the response."
Posted by Margaret Kane
Google’s Growing Online Office
Does anyone remember how, less than a year ago, several commentators suggested Google was compiling a series of products that could emulate an online operating system? At the time, Google steadfastly denied such rumors. Yesterday, Google purchased Upstartle, the maker of a browser-based word processor called Writely.
Writely is an online word processor that enables multiple users to access and work on documents from any location. It can be used as a collaborative editing device and offers users online publishing options including the ability to convert Writely documents into “normal-looking web pages” or blog postings.
The acquisition of Upstartle, combined with other current and pending Google services poses a serious challenge to Microsoft’s desktop oriented products. Google is clearly building a suite of branded, browser-based applications that contains several daily use products designed to capture users from Microsoft Office.
Earlier today, Slashdot published a story suggesting Google is running a closed beta test of Google Calendar, including a link to a series of screen shots. The project, nicknamed CL2, will be integrated with Gmail in the future.
The stakes for both firms are high with Microsoft preparing to release its new Internet focused operating system, Vista before the end of 2006. Until recently, Microsoft was able to bank on the storage space offered by personal computers. Its operating systems run from the hard drive and most digital documents composed by computer users are stored on those users’ hard drives. The security of the hard-drive dependent storage system Microsoft enjoyed is about to change radically.