Salesforce.com Launches Free Mobile Service

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Launched in London, and runs on iPhone, Blackberry and Windows Mobile devices

Salesforce.com has introduced a free application that accesses the online customer relationship management (CRM) suite from iPhones, Blackberrys, or Windows Mobile devices.

Mobile Lite, launched by Salesforce chief executive Marc Benioff at the company’s Cloudforce event in London, will be available to customers who have either Salesforce CRM Professional Edition, Enterprise Edition or Unlimited Edition; those with the Professional or Enterprise Editions will be able to upgrade to the full mobile version of CRM for an additional $50 per user per month, while Unlimited Edition customers can access the full mobile version at no extra cost.

The full mobile version includes extra functionality.
With Mobile Lite, customers will have access to Salesforce’s Sales Cloud and

Service Cloud; they will be able to log calls and emails, update activities and tasks, view account and contact details, and access their dashboard.
For those using the Sales Cloud, that means being able to manage workload and relationships, and act on customer requests, while on the road.

Service Cloud mobile functionality includes being able to update tasks and calendars from the field, checking previous activity, and reviewing cases. An SaaS solution, the Service cloud already allows users access to Google search, Facebook connections, Twitter and online communities and discussion forums.

Once the application has been downloaded to the iPhone or other device, and the user has logged in with their credentials, they can see an account, drill down into it, and note any details added by others in their organisation. The Salesforce CRM updates in real-time, with new data being sent from the cloud to the user, who could then potentially walk into their next meeting armed with information even the client may not be aware of, such as when a shipment is arriving.

Once a meeting is completed, the user can then assign a task through their mobile device – such as “send contact” – which is then sent to the recipient within their organisation via the cloud.

Salesforce has been rapidly adding functionality to its cloud-computing platform, and also provides real-time updates to its applications. In a presentation in New York in March 2009, CEO Marc Benioff predicted that cloud computing was the future not only for his company, but also Microsoft, IBM and other IT organizations currently making a massive push into the space.

Started over a decade ago in San Francisco, Salesforce as a CRM service has evolved to include the Apex development language, Visualforce, the AppExchange platform and the Force.com “platform as a service.”