Recently, IBM has been heavily promoting their social collaboration software, ‘Connections’ which at first glance looks similar to ‘Lotus Quickr’ existing for quite some time. Though there is overlap between features of Quickr and Connections, there are also some basic differences about them.
Before shedding light on the basic differences in terms of meeting certain social business needs, I am going to provide a brief introduction of Quickr as well as Connections in terms of their use cases.
Quickr, a social team collaboration software, is more likely to be used by a group or project of people within an organization, sometimes with external users. The primary benefit is security and the ‘rights’ for shared data is important i.e. being selective about who can see or edit that data. Thus the basic need of secure file sharing is served by Quickr and additionally some workflow management, the ability to let others know when some files are posted or edited, can be also done via an email alert.
Connections, on the other hand, is enterprise social software which comprises several components such as Profiles, Files, Communities, Wikis, and Blogs etc. Here ‘Files’ serves the need of data sharing and revision management, ‘Profiles’ is primarily used to find people in organization, ‘Communities’ provides a collaborative space with common interests to work together and ‘Ideation’ provides the ability to crowdsource ideas. Thus Connections thrives on being more social and open by nature, although still within secure enterprise infrastructure.
Now I am going to outline the major parameters on which these two differ.
Quickr can be installed on Domino platform as well as Websphere J2EE platform. Connections on the other hand can ONLY be installed on a Websphere J2EE platform.
According to this link from IBM website, IBM has withdrawn from marketing Quickr thereby hinting that its eventual replacement will be Connections Content Manager. So how it’s going to affect the support to product? Well according to IBM support policies, it will be supported for “5+3″ years as Quickr is in IBM’s ‘Enhanced’ support product list. This means five years from the initial release, plus three years after the end of support (EOS) with an extra fee to IBM.
Most Quickr Places have a membership that is controlled from within and It’s uncommon to have a Quickr Place where the access is wide open to everyone and people can ‘self join’. Connections Communities are often open for individuals to self join thus Communities are more inclusive unlike Quickr Places which restricts the open access
Usually someone is assigned (or self assigned) to manage a Quickr Place. Connection Communities, on the other hand, have no such formal structure to manage it. However Communities may have leaders who can guide the content structure and also contribute towards it.
If you have gone through above parameters then it becomes clearly evident that Quickr Place would likely require more controls for the content contained whereas Community content is often less structured and the content may be more open towards sharing.
How well do you use Quickr in your organisation? Will you replace your Quickr with IBM Connections?
We would love to hear from you.