Notes 8 inboxLate last week Ed Brill announced on his blog that there would be another public beta of Notes 8 before the product ships ‘mid-year’. I’m somewhat spoilt as I have access to internal builds of Notes 8 and have seen the quality improve in the time since the first public beta – I think that everyone else will be very pleased when they see the progress made.

Having been using Notes 8 for so long (since beta 1 late last year) Notes 7 looks almost alien when I see someone else using it. Notes 8 is packed with features that I use on a day-to-day basis and now can’t do without… stuff like:

  • Message threads – seeing related e-mails grouped together on the surface of the Inbox, thus removing clutter
  • Type-ahead addressing which picks up the names of people who you’ve collaborated with recently (even if you didn’t add them to your address book) or frequently (imagine how many Smiths there are in IBM, but it always presents my colleague Martin Smith first)
  • Activities integration – a great capability for managing the myriad of information fragments that constitute a project, and the Notes 8 integration is slick and seamless
  • The productivity editors – goodbye PowerPoint
  • Integrated Sametime – which effectively puts Voice-over-IP, telephony and video capabilities into the Notes client
  • The new design for the ‘day-at-a-glance’ calendar in the sidebar

With Sametime 7.5.1 just released (and way ahead of the competition), and with Quickr and Connections due to ship this Summer, the Lotus portfolio has never looked stronger. Spread the word.

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