Thoughts on the IBM announement on Notes and Domino #domino2025

October 25 2017

IBM today announced IBM Notes & Domino 10, coming in the second half of 2018, along with a strategic partnership with HCL to develop the release, along with the following products:

  • IBM Notes and Domino
  • IBM SmartCloud Notes
  • IBM Notes Traveler
  • IBM Mobile Connect
  • IBM Verse
  • IBM Mail Support for Microsoft Outlook (IMSMO)
  • IBM Enterprise Integrator (LEI)
  • IBM Sametime portfolio
  • IBM Connections Chat/Meetings
  • IBM Client Access (ICAA)

This does not cover IBM Connections, the 'Pink' release, and IBM Watson Workspace. It seems the Cisco and Box relationships stay within IBM as well, but I did not confirm that.

There will be a 'jam' for all of those who want to participate in what the Notes & Domino 10 release looks like, including influencing the road map. RSVP for the Jam here.

My thoughts: I am excited to see new life and attention put into the products and a new major release coming next year. But reality sets in and you realize that to get that life and attention, IBM had to enter a strategic partnership i.e. outsource to one of the large outsource vendors in the marketplace. That means that for whatever the pot of money being invested, it gets spread around much farther. That means current developers at IBM will move to HCL, which will include new developers in locations other than the US or Ireland. This also includes support, which is moving to HCL. Product Management, Sales, and marketing all remain with IBM. As many of us know, when things are outsourced to teams outside the sphere of influence of the main company, quality and service can take deep declines. I don't want to be a debbie downer here. I am happy that IBM found a way to get new life into the products. Will the quality move forward? Will customers trust an outsourced development team? Will IBM be able to manage remote developers? Will the renewed energy stop the migrations off the platform? These are all great questions that need to be answered. No one knows the answer today. I am willing to keep an open mind and give IBM the chance to reenergize the product.

What I would like to see from IBM is more than a roadmap. We need a strategic plan on how they are competing with Office365, Slack, Salesforce, and GSuite. How will a new Notes and Domino release, along with the Cisco and Box integrations, connected with Connections PINK and Watson Workspace. The power of Office365 and GSuite are not the individual products, but how they integrate together. Making the parts more powerful when they all integrate with each other. That strategic plan also needs to be specific on cloud and application development, both which have severely fallen on the wayside the past 24 months. I am doing what I can to provide my input - both externally and internally - and will continue to do so.

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