Finally, a clear statement from Jeff Teper regarding SharePoint on-premise. Seeking to allay growing fears in the community’s SPYam Yammer thread for SharePoint users and elsewhere, he replied (as reported by Bjorn Furuknap on his blog):
“I don’t know how to say this more clearly. We plan to do future server releases. We committed to a timeframe for the next one. We never have communicated or contemplated that it’s the last one, and I’d ask you guys [to] help correct people who might make that up. Just we’re not getting ahead of ourselves and talking about plans, we’ve not made yet for n + 2, which we’ve never done in the history of the product.”
I chided Microsoft about their poor messaging regarding SharePoint Server after the company’s SharePoint conference in early March, saying that such a strong emphasis on Office 365, coupled with a one-sentence statement that said there will be another server release in 2015, was leaving on-premise customers uneasy at best (or angry at worst). In my article, I urged Microsoft to make a clear statement about the future of the on-premises server.
And so, it has.
Sadly, people will continue to complain that Office 365 is getting more feature updates than SharePoint Server, and that it’s part of some sinister plot by Microsoft to move folks to the cloud. Balderdash, I say! It’s the nature of developing for the Web, in agile sprints, versus rolling out a big, honkin’ application every 18 months or so. I’m sure Microsoft will deliver updates more frequently than it has in the past for on-premise SharePoint Server, but the big point is, if you don’t want to or can’t move to the cloud, you won’t have to, and the promise is you will continue to have new and improved server editions available to you.
Now we need to see if Microsoft will indeed be true to its word. I don’t doubt that it will.