Salesforce chief executive Marc Benioff has heralded the arrival of "Cloud 2.0" at the launch of Chatter, a software-as-a-service collaboration tool similar to Facebook.
The original move to a large-scale market for cloud services had been about speed and ease of access, according to Benioff, but the next evolution will be towards networking.
Salesforce seeshuge productivity gains to be made by sharing data across teams and projects in a way that people are used to doing socially.
"We are on the precipice of a move from Cloud 1 to Cloud 2. Cloud used to be all about speed and ease of access. Cloud 2 is different," said Benioff.
"We will re-engineer new types of productivity and collaboration software. Consumers are already trained in it and they are going to demand it."
The evolution of smartphones has changed the way the internet is accessed, according to Benioff, and it is this flexibility that makes networking for businesses and consumers so rewarding.
Benioff was speaking at the start of a 20-stop worldwide promotion of Chatter. The service adds a Facebook-style format to other Salesforce applications, and allows social networking between teams, departments or entire companies.
Chatter will allow teams to react a lot more quickly by offering access to social networking groups on the fly, Benioff said. The tool will support collaborative documents, and will integrate with all Salesforce services.
The software is currently in a private beta at around 100 companies, and the final product should be released this year.
Benioff could not resist a dig at his former employer during the presentation. "I have a lot of respect for Oracle, but I was shocked that the number one product at OpenWorld was a server," he said.
"Oracle's vision is for more hardware and more software. But we see no hardware and no software."
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