IBM has announced that after two years in development and testing by more than 25,000 businesses around the world, Lotus Notes 8 and Lotus Domino 8 ( will be available from today.  IBM Lotus Notes 8 and IBM Lotus Domino 8 represent the industry's first enterprise collaboration solutions largely designed with input from customers.

Research and insight gained from IBM R&D Laboratories and businesses worldwide indicate overall collaboration has superceded email as the key characteristic of desktop experience.  Consequently, Lotus Notes 8 is designed to transform the inbox into an integrated workspace that brings together email, calendar, instant messaging, office productivity tools and custom applications.
Lotus Notes 8 integrates work by building in instant messaging, presence awareness and office tools to create and edit documents, presentations and spreadsheets.  Plus, it helps in infusing a business’ custom applications, including Help Desk, CRM, Sales Force, Discussion Forums, Blogs and more.
“Our customers are calling Lotus Notes 8 the ‘desktop of the future’ because it consolidates all their collaboration tools into one screen,” says Zoaib Hoosen, IBM South and Central Africa’s Software Group Executive.  “Collaboration is eclipsing email as the killer application we use daily, whether your virtual desktop is on your desk, in your car, your hand, or your ear.  Notes and Domino 8 provides a personal portal to the Web 2.0 world.”
In addition, Lotus Notes 8 organises key applications neatly in the inbox via a newly expanded sidebar, putting the user’s most valuable resources within sight after log on.  “Lotus Notes & Domino 8 is a great work setup for having ‘everything at your fingertips’”, adds Hoosen.
Lotus Notes 8 provides instant productivity through immediate access to people, current projects or activities, and information without leaving the inbox. Time can be saved through a new search tool that lets users automatically extend searches beyond email and contacts to web and hard drive file searches. Face can be saved through the “message recall” feature which enables users to quickly recall an email message after it has been sent by mistake, sparing a user from possible miscommunication.
In addition, through the new “conversation” feature, users can view all individual messages in their inbox – the traditional approach – or they can now view their emails grouped together in related conversations or threads by subject.  Hundreds of emails can be immediately reduced to dozens of conversations.
Building on its leadership in the business social networking, IBM is enabling Notes and Domino customers to add the Activities component of Lotus Connections directly into Notes. Licensed separately, the Activities option enables the worker to share collaborative content such as documents, email, instant messaging and other items related to a project into one logical unit.
Companies of all sizes, industries and technology lineages are embracing ND8 as the most comprehensive and versatile open collaboration platform they’ve used.  Lotus Notes 8 includes the IBM Lotus productivity tools enabling users to create open standards-based versions of spreadsheets, word processing documents, presentations, in addition to supporting many file formats from traditional stand-alone applications.
These tools are included at no additional charge with Lotus Notes & Domino 8.  The productivity tools support the Open Document Format (ODF), allowing users to import and export supported file formats used by Microsoft Office and save them either in the original format or ODF.
Built on open standards, Lotus Notes 8 supports businesses’ existing applications and extends their life by combining them through mashups with newer applications, resulting in composite applications that can help provide deeper insight into key business functions. For example, on a single screen, developers could link a Domino-based sales application with a supported human resources system running on another platform.
Notes 8 delivers now what many consider only a future prospect: A composite application model for effective creation and use of best-of-breed software components and standard plug-ins.
Lotus Notes 8 is built on the programming model of Lotus Expeditor 6.1.1, which is based on open standards.  Lotus Expeditor 6.1.1 enables the construction and deployment of enterprise mashups, also known as composite applications. With the inclusion of the Lotus Expeditor programming model, developers can integrate these same Composite Application capabilities into the Notes user experience.
The Lotus Expeditor platform is also separately licensable at an additional charge for customers who want to create their own user experience for line-of-business applications spanning PDA, Smartphone and Desktop systems that optionally connect into existing infrastructure.