Outsourcing Email: Universities Switching to Google Apps for Education

My friend Owen sent me this article about Lakehead University switching more than 38,000 e-mail accounts to Google Mail in three days. Here’s the core of the article:

Because it is getting the whole suite for no charge and it is entirely hosted by Google rather than on university hardware, the university expects to save $2 million to $3 million a year on maintenance and about $6 million annually on infrastructure.

And, Jafri said, students, staff and faculty now get 2GB each of storage space, versus 60MB with the old system. In addition, he expects Google to deliver 99 per cent availability. “It’s very hard for us to get to that level of availability.”

There is no doubt in my mind that there is a progressive but, eventually, extensive outsourcing of email functions for all small to medium organizations. What is interesting is that public institutions are starting to do it and it gets in the press.

(Disclaimer: I have switched to Gmail a long time ago and never looked back.)

Published by

Daniel Lemire

A computer science professor at the Université du Québec (TELUQ).

3 thoughts on “Outsourcing Email: Universities Switching to Google Apps for Education”

  1. Michael: you get far more than 2GB. You get a dynamically allocated storage limit.

    Miranda apparently posted this from the Montreal area, and not from the Thunderbay area according to her IP.

  2. I came across your blog while troubleshooting my Lakehead U Gmail. It’s actually not working very well. Before the switch, we couldn’t access our email reliably. And after the switch, we still can’t access it all the time. It’s around 80-85%, which is pretty poor for students who depend on it for school and work.

    Feel free to response, but I won’t get it, because the server is down. Oddly, gmail’s regular mail seems fine…just LU’s that’s not functioning.

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