Salesforce.com, SAP and several other companies have lined up to show off applications they created using the APIs from the open-source Google Wave platform.
These Wave extensions could be promising enough to find their way into the Google Wave application store Google is planning.
Launching to 100,000 invitees as an extended preview Sept. 30, Google Wave is Google's real-time collaboration platform, which marries e-mail, instant messaging, wikis and social networking in one Web browser-based palette. Google hopes to foster an ecosystem of new applications built on top of the platform, which is based on HTML5 and leverages the XMPP messaging protocol.
One of the most interesting experiments to come out of the Wave developer preview from the last two months is Gravity, a prototype of a business process modeling application from SAP Research. In this demo video, Gravity is used to create process models for two merging companies in real time. Additional participants are called into the Wave session to work on the model, and each user is color coded to differentiate their work.
Salesforce.com engineers created an extension that shows how a mobile phone customer starts a wave with a support robot. The robot creates a tracking record and pulls help content into the wave based on the customer's comments.
When the issue isn't resolved, the customer clicks a link to request a chat. Wave sends this request to the robot, which fires off a request to Salesforce.com to find an available representative. The representative can click on a link to access the case.
While the SAP and Salesforce.com demos are just prototypes, it's easy to see the sort of interest such applications could hold for enterprise users looking to more efficiently collaborate and share content.
Google Wave Product Manager Stephanie Hannon said in a blog post that her team is exploring plans for a monetizable wave extension store. If SAP and Salesforce.com complete their prototypes, they could be a lock to sell in the Wave store. Real-time collaboration solutions leveraging Wave could prove very useful for users of enterprise and CRM applications, boosting the marketability of applications that can run in Wave.
Meanwhile, several companies have come to the fore to release ready-to-use Wave extensions. British Telecom's Ribbit arm, for example, has created conferencing and voice message gadgets for Google Wave.
Ribbit Conference enables real-time audio collaboration between wave participants. Users can establish an audio connection with multiple Google Wave participants, add non-Wave participants to the session, and mute, hold or disconnect any of the individual participants from the stream, just as if it were any other phone conferencing service.
Ribbit Message allows Google Wave participants to add voice messages for one or many users in a wave. Though not ready for public consumption, this gadget displays the audio transcription with the audio message attachment.
Ribbit said its Conference and Message gadgets will "initially be free for developers to download and use for a limited time," which suggests that Ribbit is waiting for Google to launch a Wave store before it begins charging developers for its extensions. Read more about Ribbit on the Wave here.
Also, 6Rounds.com has integrated its video conference app into Google Wave, while AccuWeather has built an extension that lets users add weather forecasts to event planning waves. Lonely Planet offers a trip planning tool Wave extension. See all of the Wave extensions here.