Google Apps and SXIP Access Identity and the Google Platform

So, everyone is writing about the Google Apps Premier Edition. Lots of partners have announced services that integrate with Google Apps today -- see the Google Enterprise Solutions gallery for what's available today.

I've complained before about Google's messed up identity system (it's not fixed yet). And it looks like SXIP is now doing the same thing that it provides for Salesforce: identity management.

I've pinged the folks at SXIP to find out more. Their press release points to SXIP Access, which is their, dare I say it, "previous" solution vs. the OpenID bandwagon? Or maybe not?

Update: I got the scoop from Lori Pike at SXIP: "At this point in time there's no relation between [SXIP Access] and OpenID or SXIP 2.0/DIX." -- and likely there will be a blog post that explains a bit more.

At Bryght, we built a SXIP module for Drupal. James is building out the OpenID client and server modules for the 2.x version of the standard. Lots of identity stuff still in the mix here...I've got lots of ideas swirling in my mind, as you should be able to tell by the scattered nature of this post.

OK, final thought: I mentioned Salesforce, who have App Exchange. I have long been expecting Google to add it's own shared contact system to complete it's Microsoft Exchange-killer. But now, they don't have to: they've got this shared platform that anyone can deploy connector apps to. And the most highly critical bits -- email and calendar -- are maintained by Google, so this limits risk for adopters.

What is interesting to me is the potential for open source here. Will Google allow connectors and solutions that are "free"? Can you connect to other solutions ONLY if you pay for a Premier edition? Google as platform is now a reality...this definitely changes things.