The Microsoft Office Labs team has just launched a new experimental tool that brings Twitter-like microblogging to the workplace. Called OfficeTalk, this concept test application lets employees post their thoughts, activities and other info which is shared with anyone and everyone in their company.
If it sounds a lot like Yammer, the “private Twitter for companies” app, the that’s because it is. But OfficeTalk isn’t being launched as an honest-to-goodness commercially available application designed to compete with Yammer and the like, it’s meant to be more of a social experimental from which the Office Labs team can learn. There isn’t even a download of the app publicly available – just a slideshow of screenshots.
By analyzing the way OfficeTalk is used at the various companies that have signed up to demo the software internally, the team hopes to learn more about how different businesses and people adopt and use these technologies. (By the way, if your company is interested in testing OfficeTalk, you can reach the Office Labs team here).
However, like the previous concept project TownSquare, elements of which are now in SharePoint 2010, some of the technologies in OfficeTalk may also make it into a commercial product at some point further down the road, too.