Macquarie Uni completes Gmail rollout

Google is back in the race to provide email services to educational institutions across the country with NSW-based Macquarie University announcing it will begin rolling out Gmail accounts to its 6000 research, teaching and administrative staff.

As the first university in Australia to move across to Gmail in September 2007, Macquarie’s decision to upgrade was influenced by the “high level of satisfaction” amongst its students for the Google Apps for Education suite.

Macquarie Vice-Chancellor Steven Schwartz said in a statement that the money it spent on its internal email system was better spent elsewhere.

Despite the University’s move to Gmail, Microsoft’s Live@edu is in-front as educational institutions across the country scramble to take advantage of the inexpensive cloud capabilities the two IT behemoths offer.

So far Google has moved five universities across to its Google Apps for Education offering, including Monash University, University of Adelaide, University of Southern Queensland, University of Western Australia and Macquarie. In 2007, it landed a contract with the NSW Department of Education and Training to support 1.3 million school students with Gmail.

In December, Edith Cowan University became the 13th university in Australia to move across to the Live@edu platform.

Last year, the University of Sydney, Queensland University of Technology, Curtin University and Flinders University all adopted Live@edu.

A small scale deployment of Macquarie staff Gmail kicks off this month, followed by three major stages that will finish in September.

Copyright © 2010 IDG Communications, Inc.

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