Nimbulus Consulting is a customer and current participant in the Office 365 Beta for small businesses. Since its formation in 2009, Nimbulus Consulting has emerged as a leading provider of cloud computing solutions to businesses based in the United Kingdom. Recently, Nimbulus shared some of their early thoughts on their Office 365 beta experience thus far. (This blog first appeared on the Office 365 blog in February 2011.
Francesca Geens, Director at Nimbulus Consulting said, "We were interested in joining the beta as we truly believe in the power that the cloud can provide to our customers, both big and small. As a Cloud Accelerate Partner with Microsoft, we are dedicated to giving the best advice possible to our clients based on their needs, and we have been energetically evaluating the Office 365 Beta and participating in their "Rapid Deployment Program" activities. As we've begun trialing the product, we wanted to share our first thoughts and excitement about the new online applications of Exchange, SharePoint and Lync.
Exchange Online: Initial set-up in Outlook was a breeze. Setting up users and administering was straightforward, as was calendar sharing. The experience is far more integrated i.e. staying on a single tab (browser window) and getting consistent navigation across all pages.
Lync Online: We love the new Lync Online branding. Also being able to see your conversation history is really useful. We tested videoconferencing with another person in a different country and it worked well across two standard ADSL connections. That's a big bonus for us having a corporate alternative to Skype.
SharePoint Online: Although I've had some experience with SharePoint, this version seems so far more advanced, it's almost like a completely different application. I can't wait to play around with the Blog and public Website functions. The thing I like best so far is the version control for documents and not having to e-mail documents around for review.
We still are in the early stages of testing, but it looks like Microsoft has developed a great product that will allow us to provide solutions to meet many of our customers' productivity needs.