EMC improves SharePoint strategy with CenterStage

EMC announced the upcoming beta availability of a new product today, Documentum CenterStage (formerly codenamed Magellan); our full write-up for 451 Group clients is here.  CenterStage appears to be aptly named, given the focus it is getting as part of the Documentum 6.5 announcement. CenterStage is part of the announcement, but not really the release.  Documentum 6.5 ships at the end of July and CenterStage Essentials goes into beta later this quarter.

But CenterStage is the most interesting part of the 6.5 announcement.  With CenterStage, EMC can finally articulate a more coherent competitive strategy against Microsoft SharePoint.  CenterStage by itself isn’t really competitive with SharePoint but it is the user-friendly front-end component the company has lacked.   Until now, there was an integration between Documentum and SharePoint.  Oh and there was eRoom, but EMC really hadn’t kept eRoom up with the times nor was it particularly well integrated with Documentum, making it difficult for the company to sell an ‘end-to-end’ story that was any better than using SharePoint along with Documentum.

So EMC is putting a lot of energy into CenterStage, it’s a big deal for EMC’s Documentum group.  Will it be a big deal outside of EMC and it’s established Documentum customer base?  Probably not intitially.  But I think a lot of people have been wondering if EMC/Documentum really would cede all the interface apps to Microsoft that easily and, eventually, inevitably, marginalize the Documentum group beyond repair.  At least now, it looks like EMC is in the fight.

Social software at EMC World

Some public disclosure finally about where EMC is headed in social software & collaboration from EMC followers Marko Sillanpaa and Laurence Hart both currently attending this week’s EMC World in Vegas.

EMC Documentum Will Not Go Quietly Into that Dark Night

“Finally a UI that is as clean and simple as Alfresco and SharePoint and a bonus that it’s as sexy as an iPhone.”

EMC World 2008: Introduction to EMC’s Next-Generation Knowledge Worker Client

“The vision: – Web 2.0 Client – Information Intelligence – Anywhere AccessWeb 2.0 Platform”