• December 7, 2010
  • By Koa Beck, Editorial Assistant, CRM magazine

Salesforce Announces Database.com, the Enterprise Database Built for the Cloud

Salesforce.com today launched Database.com, an enterprise database built for the cloud that is now available for use in any language and on platform or device.

Database.com has been a work in progress for the past 12 years and was developed in response to the industry’s shift to mobile applications. Salesforce.com hopes that using Database.com will allow developers to focus more on building applications and less on managing and maintaining database management systems and hardware.

Database.com can support applications in Java, C#, Ruby, PHP, among others. Applications can be run on any platform, such as Force.com, VMforce, Amazon EC2, Google AppEngine, Heroku or Microsoft Azure. These applications can be run natively on mobile devices like an Android phone, BlackBerry, iPad, or iPhone, securely calling the Database.com application programming interfaces over the Internet. Database.com can support both small applications needed by only a few users to those that have hundreds of thousands of users.

The capabilities of Database.com include:

  • File storage: for documents, video, and images.
  • SOAP and REST APIs: Database.com includes standard Web services APIs, making it easy for developers to access their Database.com data
  • Social data model: New kinds of apps require new data models. Database.com includes a prebuilt social data model for feeds, user profiles, status updates, and a following model for all database records. Database.com includes social APIs that developers can use to easily interact with the social components of their data models. For example, they can specify followers for database records or request data feeds to display real-time data updates
  • Automatic elasticity: Database.com is built for Internet scale with automatic tuning, upgrades, backups and replication to remote data centers, and automatic creation of sandboxes for development, test, and training
  • Identity and Authentication: Access can be managed via oAuth or SAML. Database.com provides user management features, including identity/profiles and authentication
  • Row-level security: Point-and-click tools allow developers to define data security access rules down to the row level. These rules drive filtering logic for all database queries from custom apps built on top of Database.com
  • Enterprise search: Database.com includes powerful enterprise search services. Developers can access a full-text search engine that automatically respects enterprise security rules
  • Tools: Database.com includes a new developer console and ETL tools. Salesforce.com has made a series of developer toolkits available separately to accelerate app development. The Database.com developer toolkits include: Java, NET, Ruby, PHP, iOS, Android, Google AppEngine, Google Data, Microsoft Azure, Amazon Web Services, Facebook, Twitter, and Adobe Flash/Flex.

“There is a shift going on in the $21.2 billion database systems marketplace,” said Donald Feinberg, vice president and distinguished analyst at Gartner, in a statement. “We’re seeing a rise in popularity of cloud enabled database management systems (DBMSs) that remove the complexity of software and hardware and deliver automatic scalability, tuning, and back-up. To truly see adoption in the enterprise, however, cloud enabled DBMSs need to support both the speed, ease, and elasticity of the cloud as well as the relational, security, and transactional features required by enterprises.”

Database.com is currently scheduled to be available as a standalone service in 2011.

Database.com will be free as a base service. Basic Database.com services, including database access, file storage, and automatic administration, will be available beginning at:

  • Free for three users, and up to 100,000 records and 50,000 transactions per month
  • $10 a month for each set of 100,000 records beyond that, and
  • $10 a month for each set of 150,000 transactions beyond that.

Database.com Enterprise Services will be priced at $10 per user per month and include user identity, authentication, and row-level security access controls.

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