Salesforce, the world's biggest customer relationship management platform, has released a new version of its flagship mobile app, with accessibility becoming a focus for many of the more than 30 features available on the application.
Salesforce1 is part of Salesforce's ongoing efforts to allow enterprises to conduct business on their mobile devices and create and use business apps for the Salesforce platform. The revamped app, which is available on the Apple App Store and Google Play Store, offers direct access to reports, better dashboard drill downs, online and offline data access, community features and connectors to SAP data provided by Informatica and MuleSoft. It also provides access to all apps running on the Salesforce platform and other business apps by third-party developers.
"Customers need to access data from legacy systems on their mobile devices to have a complete view of their businesses on the go," says Ashutosh Kulkarni, Informatica vice president and general manager for data integration. "With our new QuickStart solution for SAP that provides pre-packaged business integration, customers can unlock back-office data from SAP and bring it right into Salesforce1 Mobile App on any device."
The app's comprehensive feature set is the result of recommendations made by existing Salesforce enterprise clients through its Salesforce IdeaExchange, says Michael Peachey, Salesforce senior director for solutions marketing. In a press release, Salesforce names companies such as Daily Mail & General Trust, Design Within Reach, Philips and Stanley Black & Decker as clients who have adopted and customized Salesforce1 to suit their individual needs.
"We have a clear indication that customers are taking the app and branding it and adding custom actions," Peachey says.
Aside from iOS and Android devices, the app will also come to BlackBerry and Windows phones with the introduction of Salesforce1 to the Z10, Global Access Secure and Windows 8 mobile browsers. The app is also making headway into the wearable industry with a version that can push notifications in all Samsung Gear smartbands.
"In today's workplace, where employees bring their devices of choice to the office, companies need to be prepared to support all devices and browsers around the globe, all while meeting compliance requirements. With Salesforce1, it is done for you," says Salesforce.
In a report released by Nielsen in February, the research firm says that Internet users in the United States spend an average of 34 hours per month going online on their mobile devices. By contrast, they only accessed the Internet through their desktop PCs 27 hours a month. Independent analyst Ovum predicts that by 2017, smartphones will account for 77% of all Internet-connected devices.
However, only 4% of users' time is spent on conducting business on mobile, which Salesforce attributes to the lack of data and process-driven business apps until, of course, the release of Salesforce1.