But the analyst firm warned that Big Blue faces a struggle to extend the products' installed based in the face of "formidable" competition from Microsoft.
"The long wait for Lotus users is over, and the impressive new functionality of Notes and Domino 8 will make the faithful happy. But new users still need to be won over," noted a Gartner advisory written by analysts Jeffrey Mann and Tom Austin.
The report said that IBM has fulfilled its promises made over the past two years by shipping the release, originally code-named Hannover, on time and with the expected functionality.
Gartner praised improvements in usability, better integration with WebSphere and integrated office automation tools for word processing, spreadsheets and presentations.
The security, performance and manageability improvements were also well received by the analyst firm.
"Gartner gives a generally positive assessment of this new release. Notes/Domino 8 delivers on IBM's Hannover promises, which should significantly improve customer satisfaction in the Lotus customer base," the report stated.
"The composite application development improvements potentially open up rich new possibilities for users.
"However, this base is still concentrated in very large accounts and IBM has not done enough to expand its presence in the larger market of organisations with fewer than 10,000 people. As with any broad platform, this is a strategic choice."
Gartner concluded that IBM must "move quickly" to expand the appeal of Notes/Domino 8, since Microsoft continues to be a "formidable competitor".
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