2008 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Social Software has been released recently and what is really interesting is that even though there are 38 vendors being reviewed only 5 are not in the niche category namely Atlassian, IBM, Jive, Microsoft and Socialtext.
I must say that having used all 5 products before and each of them is really fantastic. Each has its own pros and cons and depending on your requirements different software should be chosen. I am glad to see that there is a good competition in this space and that makes my life as a consultant a tad easier having the ability to pick and choose the best product for the situation.
What is really interesting is that there is no one in the category of “Leaders”. Atlassian, Jive and Socialtext barely made it into the “visionaries” quadrant (they are all sitting on the line of the quadrant). All three products are really quite revolutionary. I demo-ed Jive to a class previously and a student responded saying, “its just a web page but its so smart” and a colleague said that the Atlassian Wiki we have within BearingPoint made his life so much better.
Next, IBM / Microsoft are in the “Challengers” quadrant with a much higher ability to execute but lack in vision. I personally think that IBM and Microsoft are not “visionary” because the general business environment is not quite ready for such software as of now. Many business people still do not quite understand what is Web 2.0, collaboration, social media and buzz words like that. I believe they are taking a wait and see strategy to this area of software development.
I would love to see next year’s results and hope to see some of the players rise up to the visionary quadrant!
Author: Sean Lew