The Microsoft tools are designed to allow enterprises to migrate data from IBM's Lotus Notes and Domino software to Redmond's latest Exchange Server, SharePoint Server and Office applications.
Erica Driver, principal analyst at Forrester Research, told vnunet.com that the year-old Microsoft migration programme is a small part of the fierce competition in the business collaboration market between the two industry giants.
Microsoft has been winning the competition in recent years, according to Driver, but Lotus made a strong comeback in the fourth quarter of 2006, posting a 30 per cent gain in revenue.
"There is a lot of excitement among IBM users about the company's presence in this area," said the analyst.
The Lotus announcement also comes less than two weeks before the scheduled general availability of Windows Vista.
Although it would appear that Microsoft has a strong advantage over IBM, Driver believes that both suites are Vista compatible, and that neither company's collaboration offerings should be affected by Vista in the short term.
"Microsoft will have an advantage ultimately but, in terms of this year, I do not think it matters," said the analyst.
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