IBM joins Open Office

Plans to integrate Lotus SmartSuite into the open source office suite
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IBM has announced that it has joined the group behind the OpenOffice.org with the intention of developing the group's software offering further.

According to a statement released by IBM, it will be bringing its Lotus SmartSuite range of software to the project and has announced that it intends to integrate the two pieces of software in the coming months.

The significance of the move is that IBM's Lotus SmartSuite is the only piece of office software that has ever posed a serious challenge to Microsoft's flagship suite.

To put it in perspective, when in the early 1990s Dell and Gateway went to Microsoft to ask if they could bundle Microsoft Office in with their PCs (up until then vendors could only bundle Works), they threatened to start bundling SmartSuite if Microsoft refused to comply – the rest is history.

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