Los Angeles chooses Google over Exchange for email – who will follow?

When the city council of Los Angeles needed to replace its Novell email system, it looked at two main options. One was Microsoft Exchange, the other Google Apps; and Google won the deal.

There is one, fascinating, caveat. According to David Sarno at LA Times:

The contract was approved pending an amendment that would require Google to compensate the city in the event that the Google system was breached and city data exposed or stolen. No such clause existed in the contract.

Compensation sounds like something more substantial than the fee refund offered by a typical SLA (Service Level Agreement) – and this is about security, not interruption of service.

I would be intrigued to know whether Microsoft pitched a traditional on-premise solution (most likely); or whether it sought to do like-for-like with Google with a hosted Exchange offering.

It’s been a good month or so for Google Apps. I’ve heard of deals with Rentokil Initial (up to 35,000 users worldwide) and Jaguar Land Rover (15,000 worldwide). Deals like this put Google on the map for many more organisations.

Could 2010 be the year of the cloud?