It’s been almost three years since Atlassian acquired HipChat and the product is now at the center of the company’s strategy as it doubles down on team collaboration. Today, it’s launching a new version of HipChat for enterprise users who want (or need) to run the service on their private networks.
Enterprises can now install a virtual machine that runs HipChat. This version will include all the standard features that are now part of the tool, including the recently launched video chat functionality. Users who switch from the Atlassian-hosted version to HipChat Server won’t notice any major differences, with the exception that the server edition can be integrated with a company’s existing enterprise identity management services.
During its beta period, HipChat Server was already up and running at about 4,000 companies. As Bernardo de Albergaria, Atlassian’s VP and general manager of the company’s newly formed Collaboration business unit, told me last week, the company decided to put more and more resources into HipChat over the last few years and now sees the product as one of its main priorities. Atlassian plans to triple the team dedicated to HipChat over the course of the next year.
De Albergaria expects that HipChat Server will replace the legacy collaboration tools that many enterprises still use today. “All of these new communication tools [like Slack], have been cloud services only,” de Albergaria said. “If you wanted a behind-the-firewall solution, you had to go with legacy tools.”
HipChat Server Plans start at $10 for up to 10 users per year for startups.
The company, of course, hopes that HipChat users will also try its more advanced services like JIRA and Confluence over time. While Atlassian is mostly known among developers who use JIRA for bug tracking and managing feature requests, the company has lately seen a number of other industries adopt its services as well. There is a hotel chain, for example, that uses HipChat to manage its housekeeping staff. That’s not a market the company is actively courting, but there is clearly some major growth potential for its tools outside of the tech space.