IBM announced of working with Ubuntu Linux vendor Canonical to expand to the U.S. a package of Linux-based desktop software and online services that was launched in Africa this year. For businesses, IBM is pitching “IBM Client for Smart Work” as a less-costly alternative to a Windows 7 upgrade, particularly for companies that skipped Windows Vista and would be making the upgrade from Windows XP. IBM cites market research estimating the cost of migrating to Windows 7 as high as $2,000 per user, if new hardware is required as part of the shift, noted. Here’s part of IBMs offering:
Word processing, spreadsheets, presentations from IBM Lotus Symphony, which is a free-of-charge download on the Web;
Email from IBM Lotus Notes or the cloud-based LotusLive iNotes launched earlier this month, which starts at $3 per user, per month;
Cloud-based, social networking and collaboration tools from LotusLive.com, ranging from $10 per user, per month;
and Canonical Ubuntu, a community-developed Linux distribution for netbooks, laptops, desktops, and servers.