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Inside Salesforce.com's New Mobile Services Platform

Inside Salesforce.com's New Mobile Services Platform
By Jennifer LeClaire

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Salesforce.com says its new Mobile Services enable developers to produce mobile apps in days, rather than weeks or months, using pre-built services for authentication, user access, testing, and analytics. By providing pre-coded tools for those services, the new Salesforce Platform allows developers to focus on perfecting the mobile-app user experience.
 


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Instant Mobile Access

One example of how Salesforce.com's customers are already realizing the benefits of the new mobile-app development platform is the Zimmer company, which sells medical devices through a team of field reps.

"In just 12 weeks, Zimmer launched a custom iPad app to share the latest details on new surgical techniques and how Zimmer's medical devices function within the human body," said Don Lamping, associate director of Sales Operations at Zimmer.

"Helping patients regain mobility is our top priority, and now surgeons can be supported by Zimmer's field reps, and have instant access to all the information they need to make the best medical decisions possible for every patient, anywhere and anytime... even in the operating room."

Lamping said that, "Leveraging the Salesforce Platform saved time and resources in the development process, and transformed our relationship with doctors and patients."

Apps for the Enterprise

Holden offered a few other related examples of how customized mobile apps can help businesses operate more efficiently:

Before, a medical-device sales rep would have to travel with numerous catalogs and devices to show how products work. Today, they can travel light with an interactive tablet app that shows customized demonstrations based on each doctor's needs, even personalized to reflect individual patient's conditions and specific procedures.

Previously, field technicians had to travel to a job site to diagnose a problem. Today, they can monitor equipment in real-time from anywhere, and preventatively flag any issues needing further attention.

Whereas companies used to resort to impersonal "spray and pray" marketing techniques, they can now instantly deliver product offers to customers right as they are walking toward their storefronts, using geolocation and customer preference data.

Calling All Developers

"Now any Web developer can be an enterprise mobile developer," Holden said.

"Currently, the hottest mobile developer tools and frameworks are based on JavaScript. However, while companies are investing in JavaScript developers to deliver engaging apps, the majority of these apps are disconnected from real-time customer and business data."

The benefit of working with Salesforce.com's Developer Mobile Pack and Mobile SDK 2.0, is that javascript developers can use the tools and frameworks they love and then connect easily with Salesforce.com's real-time data to build HTML5, native, and hybrid mobile apps that can be called "truly engaging."

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