Microsoft finally disclosed their plan to integrate their product FAST ESP, acquired for $1.2B from a Norwegian company, one of the major players in the enterprise search market. Therefore, it’s no surprise that Microsoft is going to merge their offering into their popular Microsoft SharePoint platform. New capabilities will be introduced as part of the new Office version later this year. So, what’s going to be the result? SharePoint Server Search products will offer High-End search capability as part of their mainstream offering.
Going back to my PLM SharePoint Paradox post, I think that Microsoft is adding additional premium content and technologies that have the potential to be reused by PLM/PDM companies. What do PLM providers need to look for in this offering? I think that PLM providers would appreciate more infrastructure capabilities that would allow them to integrate SharePoint/Search with external content providers (as such PLM/PDM systems). Today’s Business Data Catalog (BDC) functionality is relatively simple and has a small capability for managing and exposing structured content. It’s clear that “content is the king” in enterprise and FAST enhancement of Microsoft Office SharePoint Server MOSS will allow more content to be absorbed, searched and accessed.
So, for now we will wait for the announced Microsoft SharePoint conference where MS will disclose its plans for its new SharePoint and Office version.