Oracle Announces Enhanced Oracle Beehive

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At COLLABORATE 09 in Orlando, Oracle announced enhancements to Oracle Beehive, a unified platform for enterprise collaboration.

"From our point of view, collaboration means email, it means your whole personal environment of calendars and tasks, it of course means team workspaces, but it also means the whole world of synchronous collaboration which is IM, web conferencing, voice, chat, presence and so forth. What we are essentially saying with Beehive is that it's a really simple idea. You have one enterprise. You need one collaboration platform that integrates all those things together," David Gilmour, senior vice president of Collaboration Technologies, Oracle, tells 5 Minute Briefing.

It is expensive to have separate platforms, "especially if you want it to scale it, especially if you want it to be secure and available," he notes. By simplifying down to a single platform, "you just remove a lot of complexity and along with the complexity, goes the cost." But, there are other reasons that IT is interested in a unified platform for collaboration-and that is for compliance and security reasons. With Beehive, says Gilmour, IT organizations can give their users what they want and still not sacrifice on the things that they have to do to take an information management perspective on collaboration.

Updates to the latest release of Oracle Beehive include web-based team workspaces. The team workspace software which builds on an enterprise-specific security and compliance framework offers a user-friendly environment for teams to manage activities and information; it includes wikis, team calendaring, RSS support, contextual search, and advanced file sharing and can be centrally provisioned or set up by the team with no portal requirement.

The new release also includes enhanced web and voice conferencing, enabling organizations to apply security and content management policies to conferencing. The expanded feature set includes on-demand conference recording and retrieval. Beehive now also offers expanded integration with popular desktop productivity tools, allowing users to take advantage of familiar software.

"Prior to 1.5, we had not released a team workspace interface to Beehive," states Gilmour. "Now, we have the team piece and that means that you can set up this platform inside your enterprise and provision team workspaces for any group, large or small, that is working towards some common purpose-in your enterprise or across with another enterprise outside the enterprise boundary."

To provide greater flexibility for customers, Oracle Beehive can be deployed on premise or through Oracle On Demand. Additional details about the release can be found here.