Amazon is set to launch a corporate email and digital calendar that competes with Outlook and Gmail. The new application, called WorkMail, is powered by the e-commerce company’s successful cloud-based computing service, Amazon Web Services.
The company plans to price WorkMail competitively with Google’s business services and Microsoft Office. Amazon has grown its cloud-based computing services into a huge part of its business. Amazon Web Services powers the technology behind major consumer brands like Pinterest and Netflix. It also powers government entities like NASA and the CIA.
Amazon maintains vast quantities of company data on its network of computer servers, allowing those companies to concentrate on other aspects of technology. Amazon Web Services also provides remote-working features for corporations, letting employees sync their devices.
The addition of email means Amazon is drastically expanding its business services and rapidly moving into an area dominated by Microsoft. Google has recently made its way in this space, as well. Introducing an email and scheduling service is probably Amazon’s first step toward a more comprehensive suite of tools. Similar to Google’s Gmail, Amazon will likely go beyond email and offer services like file-sharing and video conferencing.
Amazon’s WorkMail will allow companies to run it on the back-end of already existing email clients, like Outlook. They have spent the last couple of years working to acquire corporate clients because large businesses spend more on data centers than startups.
There are, however, concerns that Amazon is spreading itself too thin. They have made several other investments in areas like entertainment and consumer devices.
Analysts predict that if Amazon adds more corporate services it could boost revenue by $10 billion or more.
The e-commerce giant is offering a free 30-day trial for WorkMail for up to 25 users. Businesses can subscribe for $4 a user per month, which includes 50 gigabytes of storage. For $6 a user per month, it offers a bundle option that includes 200 gigabytes of file storage through its cloud-based file-sharing product, Zocalo.