Fitting into the big picture

Agencies are more concerned with information technology consistency than they once were, thanks to efforts such as the federal enterprise architecture initiative.

The impact of such programs on alternative e-mail platforms has been minimal, said Sidney Smith, area sales manager for Mirapoint Inc.'s federal division. He said Mirapoint has the protocols in place to interface with desktop clients and wireless applications. "We don't see [enterprise architecture] as anything but a plus for us," Smith said. The Appraisal Subcommittee of the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council uses Gordano Ltd.'s messaging product. Ben Henson, the subcommittee's executive director, said federal standardization efforts haven't been an issue. Art Sands, chief operating officer at AC Technology Inc., said the steeper slope for alternative solutions to climb is Microsoft Corp.'s sitewide licensing and the dominance of Windows in general. Those factors have made Microsoft Exchange a de facto standard for many enterprise customers. "When you have 97 percent of computers running some type of Windows, it is hard for them not to standardize on it," Sands said.

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