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Statement of Direction (SoD) for Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Reveals CRM Release Schedule

Microsoft is planning to deliver two minor updates and two more major ones to its online and on-premises CRM offerings in the next 12 months, revealed the Microsoft’s updated “statement of direction” for its on-premises and online version of its CRM product.

Instead of the traditional three years between major releases, Microsoft Dynamics CRM will change to a semi-annual release cycle (spring and fall), according to the updated roadmap.

Microsoft also is planning to deliver an “automatic update” to Dynamics CRM Online in the fourth quarter of calendar 2011, as well as a “scheduled update” to Dynamics CRM Online in Q2 of calendar 2012. On the on-premises front, Microsoft is planning on an update for Dynamics CRM in the fourth quarter of this year, and an upgrade of the Dynamics CRM product in the Q2 of calendar 2012.

“As you would expect, automatic updates happen all at once while scheduled updates allow Dynamics CRM Online customers to schedule their update within one year. I think it’s pretty safe to assume that scheduled updates will be larger in scope and complexity compared to automatic updates,” the blog post explained.

“Microsoft will release an “update” for the on-premise version of Dynamics CRM in Q4 of calendar 2011. An “upgrade” of the on-premise version of Dynamics CRM will be available in Q2 of calendar 2012.

On-premise upgrades may incorporate significant Microsoft platform innovations (e.g. the next releases of Windows Server and desktop, .NET Framework, SQL Server, Office), while updates offer smaller scale new capabilities,” the post noted.

“Moving forward, new capabilities for Dynamics CRM (both Online and On-premises) will be delivered approx. twice yearly with releases targeted for Spring (Q2) and Fall (Q4) of each calendar year. Additionally, Microsoft”ll provide additional functional capabilities for Online, On-premises and Partner-hosted deployments via the Microsoft Dynamics Marketplace. This functionality is completely optional for all customers depending on their business needs,”Microsoft’s updated statement of direction said.

The statement of direction also included a reference to the “consumerization of business applications,” noting that users now have greater expectations about the kinds of devices — PCs, laptops, tablets and phones — from which they access CRM information. Microsoft’s commting to continue to offer multi-browser support for its CRM offerings, “by utilizing HTML5 for structuring and presenting comment,”” the document said.

Reference: Microsoft Dynamics CRM Statement of Direction (SoD) (PDF)

[Source: Microsoft Dynamics CRM Blog]

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