Salesforce.com unveiled Database.com, a standalone cloud database for IT pros creating applications, increasing its competition with Oracle and Microsoft.
Salesforce.com is using its annual Dreamforce conference to
unveil Database.com, its new standalone cloud database for IT pros creating
applications. The company claims that developers for nearly any device and
platform will be able to leverage Database.com's features, even for
applications using Amazon EC2 and other non-Salesforce.com cloud
"We see cloud databases as a massive market opportunity that
will power the shift to enterprise applications that are natively cloud, mobile
and social," Marc Benioff, Salesforce's chairman and CEO, wrote in a Dec. 7
statement. "For the first time, we are making Database.com, the database that
is proven and trusted by our 87,000 customers, available as an open, standalone
service to accelerate the creation of these new apps."
In addition to file storage and standard Web-services APIs,
Database.com offers a relational data store for tables, relationships,
enterprise search, and a query language. As with Salesforce.com's other
offerings, one of the selling points of the online database is its automatic
upgrading and backup capability.
Database.com recognizes a variety of developer languages,
including Java, C#, Ruby and PHP. It also supports running apps on platforms
such as Salesforce.com's own Force.com, VMforce, Amazon EC2, Google AppEngine,
Microsoft Azure and Heroku. Security certifications include ISO 27001, SAS 70
Type II, and SysTrust.
With Database.com, Salesforce potentially heightens
competition not only with Oracle, with its range of database offerings, but
also Microsoft and its SQL Azure, a cloud-database service.
For some time, Benioff has used Salesforce.com to push a
vision of the cloud-and by extension, enterprise applications-as an
increasingly mobile-centric, social-networking-driven platform. In a number of
speeches, he has referred to this shifting paradigm as "Cloud 2," while
offering up products such as Chatter 2, which allows employees to post comments
and share files in a Facebook-style environment, as the best way for companies
to take advantage of it.
Salesforce.com's embrace of the cloud and SAAS (software as
a service) has brought it into tighter competition with Oracle, where Benioff
used to be an executive. During
October's Gartner Symposium/ITxpo 2010
, he took a swipe at Oracle's Exalogic
Elastic Compute Cloud
. "It's just another computer, and when [Oracle CEO]
Larry [Ellison] said it starts at a million dollars, I went: Is it democratic?
Is it energy efficient? Is it good for the environment, do you have to upgrade
it and update it? Because if it isn't any of those things, it isn't cloud
In the meantime, Microsoft
has taken an increasingly aggressive stance with Salesforce
. In "An Open
Letter to Salesforce.com Customers," the software giant dangles a $200-per-user
rebate for any organization that switches from Salesforce to Microsoft Dynamics
CRM Online. The two companies traded patent-infringement lawsuits earlier this