Google is considering offering its high capacity Gmail e-mail service as a complete hosted enterprise solution.
Google is planning to offer Gmail as a back-end service and provide all necessary hardware and software. Each enterprise end-user would get 2Gbytes of storage space, the same as consumer users of Gmail currently get.
This is far more than most enterprise users get from their IT department, when using established e-mail systems built around Microsoft Outlook or Lotus Notes, for instance.
The beta service is called “Gmail for your domain” and provides organisations with a control panel to allow them to administer and manage user accounts. San Jose City College in California is already testing the new service with about 10,000 students. Gmail was first launched to consumers in April 2004.
Google has so far not announced any commercial roll-out date for the enterprise Gmail service, or indicated how much it would cost. The consumer service is free but Google has carefully controlled the number of people being allowed to use it.
Google already offers companies internal data search appliances.