I am not sure what the opening sentence of this article means:

Microsoft will announce the release date of the next version of its Exchange Server in the first half of 2005, but until the upgrade arrives users can expect more management tools for existing versions, a company executive said this week.
Does that mean they will have a new release in 1H05, or that they won't even announce a new version until 1H05 (for shipment further on after that)?  The rest of the article, and my own educated guess, would say it's the latter...that things are now so bad for the Exchange group that their roadmap is slipping.
RedMonk analyst James Governor believes that few Exchange users are currently worried about when the next version of Exchange will be released.  "A lot of Exchange shops want to see more management tools so the real story is not Exchange as much as it is MOM and other tools," Governor said.
From my own experience, I disagree.  During the period between R5 and Notes/Domino 6, IBM was accused of being "dark" in the market, which people now tell me contributed to a sense that IBM wasn't investing in it.  I think the same applies to MS -- it is clear to even the most casual observer that MS is investing instead in Office as a platform, including SharePoint, InfoPath, Office Live, and rumours of an "Office Server"... not Exchange.
Now, here's the latest in a long series of cop-out lines from the Exchange team:
However, Microsoft is in no hurry to set down a specific road map for the product since the demands of messaging and collaboration are changing so rapidly, Akers said.
Yes, the demands are changing so rapidly that all they've been able to muster since 2000 is a point release and cancellation of their next major release ("Kodiak").  Things moving too fast for Microsoft?  Those analogies that compare them to IBM of old seem to be increasingly accurate.
Link: ComputerWorld Australia: Exchange users to get more tools >

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