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Computacenter launches cloud-computing email product

The IT reseller and services provider has launched a cloud email service in the UK, with future services planned for rollout over the course of 2011

Computacenter has launched a UK cloud email service that can be hosted either on or off-premise, with further services due throughout the year.

C3Mail — the C3 stands for Computacenter Cloud Computing — is a managed Exchange 2010 email platform from the IT reseller and service provider, which announced the launch on Thursday.

"We understand that organisations don't want to move all their IT to the cloud at once, so our C3 approach is about working alongside companies to develop a pragmatic, step-by-step plan for blended IT service delivery," Computacenter's director of services and solutions Neil Muller said in a statement. "C3Mail is the first step in our cloud offering and will be followed by collaboration and virtual desktop services later in the year."

The service will cost £7.95 per mailbox per month and is available now, Matt Lovell, Computacenter's chief technology officer, told ZDNet UK. Computacenter is guaranteeing 99.9 percent availability for the email service. 

Upcoming services

Four further products are slated for 2011, according to Lovell. Later on in the first quarter, the company will introduce C3Collaboration, which will be an instant messaging service. C3Client will come in the second quarter, which is a thin and thick virtualised client delivery mechanism. The company plans two launches in the third quarter: C3Datacentre, a combination of infrastructure-as-a-service and component services, and C3DR, a cloud-based disaster recovery solution.

The services, including C3Mail, will be available in both on and off-premise forms. If off-premise they will be hosted in Computacenter's four UK datacentres, Lovell said.

Computacenter is targeting C3Mail at medium to large organisations from 1,000 up to 50,000 users for an on-premise deployment and for up to 100,000 users for off-premise.

One particular target for Computacenter is the public sector, with which it already has a variety of contracts. Around 20 percent of the company's customers are public sector, Lovell said.

"I think [the public sector is] very interested in consuming their services more flexibly on a unit base," Lovell said. He said that he felt the option of an on-premise deployment would assuage potential security concerns.