Amazon.com has announced their new corporate email service to compete with Microsoft and Google.
Beginning in the 2nd quarter of 2015, the company will begin offering Amazon WorkMail, an email and calendaring service through its Amazon Web Services (AWS) division. Pricing is planned at $4/user/month and comes with a mailbox and 50 GB of storage. There are options to upgrade storage and to add additional capabilities like file storage via the AWS account that you are required to create to use this new offering.
Amazon WorkMail Features to Expect
Outlook Compatible – Amazon WorkMail provides built-in support for Microsoft Outlook for both Windows and Mac, allowing users already using Outlook to continue with that familiar interface while enjoying the additional benefits from Amazon’s service.
Managed (hosted) Service – by taking advantage of it’s managed services approach, it is easy to manage corporate email infrastructure and eliminating the need for up-front investments servers and licenses. With no complex software to install and renew each year and automatic patches, back-ups and upgrades, this could save some significant cash.
Enterprise-Grade Security – Amazon WorkMail automatically encrypts all of your data with encryption keys you control, using one of the many services within the AWS suite- AWS Key Management Service.
Anywhere Access – Users can synchronize their mailboxes with iOS, Android, and Windows Phone devices (using the Microsoft Exchange ActiveSync protocol). If you are migrating from your own Microsoft Exchange server, your users’ mobile devices can automatically connect to Amazon WorkMail with no end-user reconfiguration required, and no change in user experience.
Active Directory Integration – You probably don’t need to know but your IT team will love the fact that Amazon WorkMail securely integrates with your existing Microsoft Active Directory so that users can access their mailbox using their existing credentials. All I need to know is that it makes things work smoothly without hassle.
You can also expect spam and virus protection as well as a migration tool.
If you move from your current service to Amazon WorkMail, you no longer have the worry and expense of maintaining on-site email serviers. WorkMail handles all of the patches, back-ups and upgrades automatically. Adding new users is now as simple as a few clicks of the mouse.
I have tried most of the services available and have always come back to a hosted Microsoft Exchange server due to the reliability, security and extremely capable synchronization across all my hardware devices. This might be the service that breaks my connection to Microsoft Exchange.
It is currently in a Preview (invite only) mode. Click here to sign up to be notified when the service is available for you to try. Unless things change, You are able to try out the service for up to 25 users with a free 30-day trial.
If you give it a go, share your experiences below in the comments.