Google Voice is Coming as an upgrade to GrandCentral

As reported in the Official Google Blog, Google is preparing to replace its GrandCentral voice service with Google Voice. Google Voice is designed to provide you with a universal number that will ring your office, home, and mobile numbers while providing a single voice mailbox and a rich set of features.

For now, only existing GrandCentral users in the US can upgrade, but Google is promising to extend availability in the near future.

Smaller Collaboration Firms add Validity to the SaaS Market

Smaller companies, like drop.io, are coming out with innovative, feature rich offerings to strong reviews.

While these solutions compete with specific collaboration functions, they do not yet offer an integrated communications and collaboration solution.

A Rational View of Google’s Recent Minor Security Glitch

David Schrag, author of Stop Buying Servers, offers a rational assessment of Google’s recent security glitch … read it here

Microsoft to VARs: Never Mind

In a major shift, Microsoft has changed its mind and backtracked from its decision to allow VARs to bill directly for SaaS solutions. Here is the story.

Google Docs now has Footnotes

Google Docs now supports footnotes! Here’s how

Publish Results with Forms and Spreadsheets

When you create a form, associated with a spreadsheet, you can now elect to share results — a summary of responses — with your collaborators, or with everybody that fills in the form.

Learn more here.

“Spreadsheet Lite” Improves Access from Mobile Phones

Google has added “List View” to Google Spreadsheets. List view is a basic, fast-loading view of a spreadsheet, with simplified editing features. It makes it easy to access Google Spreadsheets:

  • On a slow Internet connection
  • From some mobile phones
  • When there are more than 50 users trying to access a spreadsheet at the same time

Learn more here.

Google Spreadsheets Get Data Validation

Google has added data validation (lenient or strict) to Google Spreadsheets. You can now:

  • Validate numbers, dates, and text.
  • Prevent users from entering text that doesn’t match your criteria, or show them a comment on the cell when the data doesn’t match the validation rule.
  • Add text to the cells you add validation to, to help your collaborators enter the right type of data.

Learn more here.

Microsoft Changes Controversial SaaS Billing Policies

After a generation of confusing and frustrating licensing policies, Microsoft may actually be listening to its channel partners. Reported by ChannelWeb, Microsoft will let channel partners bill customers for SaaS services.

Google Starts Down Certification Path

Google announced that they are offering on-line courses and a certification test for Google Analytics. This is a good start in helping business owners understand if they are engaging qualified resources.

We look forward to Google expanding the program to their other product lines. We also encourage Google to consider a practicum or customer references to further validate skill sets.