Thursday, 28 January 2010, Soft Phones & Skype

This past summer, I was demoed a very impressive feature within - a built in soft phone with an open API allowing for anyone to write a telephony connector. When someone calls, the soft phone takes over and allows you to log the call. If it's a contact, it shows you who is calling and adds the call details to the contact history.

While surfing through the App Exchange, I came across Skype for Salesforce - Basic Edition 2.0. This free Skype application provides seamless Skype integration into Salesforce.

Skype for Salesforce offers you full Skype functionality in your Salesforce screen. You will see the online status of your Skype contacts, you will be able to call them with one click and also receive calls. For received calls with caller ID, Salesforce automatically retrieves the record of that person so you are prepared when you take the call.

Conference calls are also supported and allow you to easily, directly from Salesforce, start a conference call with a few clicks.
The installation was very straightforward and the vendor provides a detailed installation guide coupled with a searchable FAQ.

If you're looking for a quick and easy way to add a basic telephony layer to your deployment, I highly recommend checking it out.

You will, of course, need a SkypeIn number but that is pretty cheap ;)

Friday, 15 January 2010

Google defaults HTTPS for all GMail users

Not that long ago, Google released an option to always use HTTPS allowing users to encrypt email as it moves between web browsers and Google servers. By using HTTPS, user data is protected from being snooped on by 3rd parties, like in public wifi hotspots. Initially, the choice of defaulting to HTTPS was up to the end user because there is a downside: HTTPS can make your mail slower because encrypted data does not travel across the web as quickly as unencrypted data. However it seems that Google has reviewed the security/latency tradeoff and decided that turning HTTPS on for everyone was the right thing to do. Woohoo!

Read more about this default setting on the official GMail blog.