If only IBM had a mail client…

Over the last year we’ve seen more and more customers move to Microsoft Office 365 for mail and calendaring. The funny thing is that very few users actually end up using the webmail experience but almost all end up in Outlook. This made me think that IBM could probably still be competitive in the mail market including for the people who prefer a rich client if it wasn’t for IBM Notes. The client is simply too bloated, too slow and too difficult to centrally manage and update. Oh and then there’s the name “Notes” which for many still is a showstopper.

So what if IBM actually had a mail only client? What if they had a mail only client – think IBM Notes with only mail, calendaring, contacts and to-dos. Keep replication, require Windows Shared Login (i.e. SSO with the operating system) and I think it would be a winner. Extensibility would be nice for us ISV’s but currently I would prefer customers to stay with IBM and having to use a web browser for applications.

If IBM had that they could actually still be a player in a market where many customers are moving to Office 365 but all complain about the cost and the performance. In many cases the IBM Connections Cloud is cheaper and WAY more performant as Office 365 is dog slow. All in all I still see IBM as a better play. If only they had a mail client…

13 thoughts on “If only IBM had a mail client…”

  1. I tottaly aggree and have been talking about this for years to IBM. The Basic Notes client SHOULD have been a Light version of mail client NOT build with Eclips. 


  2.  i wish there was a Notes client that didn’t have the mail aspect at all – just click on an application icon on your windows desktop and the application ( XPinC ) would open – the ultimate in a mobile client 🙂


  3. I agree. The question is will IBM consider it. I have many customers that are using Verse becaus it was forced upon them. When I ask how it’s working for them, I hear many things but not anything positive. Ouch!

    I have, at times, switched back to the Notes basic client, which runs quite well and fast.

    I would like to see an IBM productivity client/app  that includes mail and project lanagement, like what we have done in eProductivity, butr in a lighter platform than Notes with the full Eclispe client. It’s doable, but it requires a vision that includes thinking about how the end-user will use it, not just how the purchasing manager will buy it.

    As an IBM Champion and the creator of eProductivity (http://www.eProductivity.com) I admittedly have a horse in this race, but I still think this is a race IBM has the ability if they can stop getting lapped by their competitors.



  4.  Wow, how do we call that trend ? "Reverse", thats what I suggest ! And I totally agree with you, I’m seeing the same requests from my customers. 


  5. A long time requested application !

    IBM Verse should be the way  ( not the web client ) and its functionallity could be extended for Windows/Mac OS to pair the Lotus Notes basic client ( only in the mail /calendar/.. aspects), and that should be the Mail light client long time expected ( not the web option). But it has a long route behind.


  6. Better yet, allow the Verse back end to be connected to from Outlook and Mac Mail.  If you have support for both of those clients to your back end, no one would care.  I also agree that an actual nice client that isn’t tied down by things like Eclipse would be great.

    But hey, too late for me.  Office 365 here we come, and my users are dancing in the streets at the news.  Sad but true. 


  7. That’s the way to ho IMHO.

    I confirm it’s "just possible". I’m currently building a java based client that embeds chromium (like Electron does) using https://www.teamdev.com/jxbrowser.

    The IBM Application Access Client (ex notes browser plugin) + Java + Chromiun could (easily) run Verse offline with all the best of Verse and the best of NSF/Notes….

    And it would work on Win/Mac/Linux.

    I look forward to IBMs decision about the mail client… Btw.. I can say my current usage is 90% Verse (Browser & Mobile app)


  8. If we’re talking about a basic mail client, why not rely on the OS vendors to provide that, and for IBM’s backend system (be that Verse or a Domino server) to support connections to it? Windows 10 and Mac both have free mail clients pre-installed, and Thunderbird would probably work OK for Linux users. I don’t see any point in IBM re-inventing a blue mail client.


  9. I fully agree that IBM Notes without eclipse that only does mail is needed. Technically speaking it is just a matter of constraining IBM NOTES to only open mail apps and removing menus…. eclipse is a monster for nothing. 


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