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November 19, 2014

IBM reinvents enterprise email

Verse will use analytics and social collaboration tools.

By Ben Sullivan

IBM has said that it is ‘reinventing’ enterprise email with a newly announced mail offering that uses built-in analytics to help employees sift through information and find a ‘new way to converse’.

Dubbed IBM Verse, the product comes from the firm’s $100m investment in design innovation.

"The convergence of analytics, cloud, social and mobile technologies is not just impacting our personal lives, it’s profoundly changing how we work," said Bob Picciano, SVP at IBM’s Information and Analytics Group.

IBM claims that Verse uses built-in analytics to provide an ‘at-a-glance’ view that displays a user’s most important actions for the day. By learning unique employee preferences and priorities over time, it can provide context about a given project as well as the people and teams collaborating on it.

IBM said that the platform comes in contrast to other inbox competitors which mine users for their data.

"These forces are reshaping how people make decisions, create and share new ideas and collaborate across teams to get work done. With IBM Verse, we challenged our design teams to use analytics to completely reimagine the social collaboration experience to focus on engaging people and driving outcomes, not managing messages and inboxes."

Verse is built on the SoftLayer Cloud with enterprise-grade security, and is optimised for mobile use. Currently in beta, a freemium version will be available on the IBM Cloud Marketplace in early 2015.

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IBM is highlighting the social angle of the platform and the use of analytics in providing useful, contextual applications.

Dion Hinchcliffe, a CSO and business strategist, said on Twitter: "I would agree that effectively merging email and social is useful advance.

"Products like IBM Verse also herald the arrival of contextual workplace. Situated views/actions with what you need most, next."

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