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Lotus Notes Domino 8 coming to Leopard in '08
Friday, August 17, 2007 @ 4:40pm

On Friday, IBM released Lotus Notes Domino 8 for Windows Vista and XP, but said that the Mac version would not be released until next year. The new release features a redesigned user experience, a new look and feel, as well as dramatically enhanced functionality for organizing messages and threads with the intent of structuring inboxes to deal with floods of email. A Mac OS X release was conspicuously absent from the announcement, however. We spoke with IBM the story behind current Mac development of Lotus ND8, when we can expect a release, and what users look forward to in the update. The IBM executives we spoke with said that Louts Notes Domino's stronghold in the Mac universe is with advertising/publishing agencies and educational institutions. However, they described a "new cachet" surrounding Macs in business, and says they "see the growth" already underway on an enterprise level. To that end, the company is investing heavily in developing the next release, ND8, for the Mac. "We want to get it right," IBM told MacNN. "In fact, the version we're currently running on a widescreen iMac looks better than the Windows release."



"Frankly, we haven't done a great job with some previous releases," IBM officials said. "7.0.2 was a huge improvement, but some of the previous releases fell short." IBM said that while previous releases might have had 80% feature parity with Windows releases, ND8 for Mac OS X should have nearly 100% feature parity. IBM also said that it has been target testing for Leopard, and what's to ensure compatibility with the upcoming OS iteration, due this Fall. Another factor that is holding the Mac version of Lotus ND8 back but should result in a better user experience when the product ships is the use of the Eclipse development framework. IBM says it has been working with Apple to make sure that Eclipse development is aligned with other platform releases. The company says that a private beta of ND8 for Mac OS X will ship alongside Leopard this Fall, and a more formal announcement will likely come at the Lotus Sphere conference which kicks off January 21st in Disney World.

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  • Reader reaction
    Found 8 comments
    How many? 202710
    Besides employees of IBM, how many losers are there out there using Notes?
    Comment posted by: Mr. Strat
    The employees of... 202720
    ...a global food company whose Macs I support. They're still using 6.5, and I hate it. The only way to fix pretty much anything that goes wrong with it is to reinstall it.

    Still, it's better than version 5, which made me want to gouge out my eyes with a rusty spoon.

    "7.0.2 was a huge improvement, but some of the previous releases fell short." -- Thank you, Captain Understatement!
    Comment posted by: phillymjs
    Why? 202723
    Why would anyone use Notes?

    Oh, wait... IT executives...

    Comment posted by: ZinkDifferent
    Oh dear god no! 202732
    We use this at work. Its awful, its the worst email client I have ever used.

    Absolutely nothing is simple on this POS. I had no idea that some muppet was still sinking money into it. What an embarrassment!
    Comment posted by: thickdrummer
    Quite a few use it 202735
    You'd be surprised how many companies use Lotus Notes. My company does, and although at first I really did not care for it, I'm getting used to it. The thing you have to remember is that Lotus Notes is not just an email client, it is a database application as well and that is its primary role. Much of how we do things between departments and for documentation purposes is done through a Lotus database. Unfortunately, we're still on 6.5 and probably won't update to version 7 for a while, let alone version 8. At any rate, I would love to see Outlook used for email and Lotus used for the databases. But, there you are talking about some really expensive licensing which is probably the bigger reason we are still using Notes for email.
    Comment posted by: blueice03
    Notes 202759
    I have little experience with Notes on a Mac. I've only just played with 7.0.2. But it's a great application and we couldn't run large pieces of our business without it. With openoffice built in we should be able to easily ditch microsoft office. To this day, there's nothing out there that can do what it can with e-mail and applications. One of the best and worst things about it is that it's COMPLETELY backwards compatible. So you never have to rip and replace. Apps written in version 2 will run fine on version 8. That's also a problem as some apps don't get updated and end up looking UGLY... which is a large reason why so many people hate it..
    Comment posted by: iNewbie
    Nationwide Insurance 202767
    uses Notes. I believe they have a few employees.
    Comment posted by: msuper69
    125 Million Users 203173
    According to Mary Beth Raven, the lead product designer for Notes 8, there are 125 million users of Lotus Notes around the world. You can take a look at her blog at http://www-03.ibm.com/developerworks/blogs/page/marybeth?entry=hannover_is_using_the_design.

    I am a new IBMer, and a long time Mac user and I'm really looking forward to the Mac version of Notes 8, which integrates Notes with OpenOffice, which should be a pretty nice combination. This integration may partly explain why it's taking longer to release the Mac version since OpenOffice has not been been completely ported to Aqua (NeoOffice and OpenOffice for X not withstanding).

    One final note: Lotus also has a Mac-compatible VPN client called Lotus Connect which runs on many OSes include Symbian S60, Linux, Windows, etc.. For split Mac/Windows offices that need a good collaboration platform, I'd rather have Notes than Exchange with it's second-rate Entourage.

    Again, for disclosure, I work for IBM, so you can take what I say with a grain of salt.

    Having said that, I've been using (and owning) Macs since the early 90's so I'm not just trying to shill for IBM. It is to everyone's benefit to have a decent Enterprise-class messaging and collaboration platform that even the biggest companies can feel comfortable using on their many Windows, Mac, and Linux desktops.
    Comment posted by: philozopher
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