This isn't a new function of Salesforce.com. The company has offered integration with Microsoft's Office and Outlook desktop applications for some time. But this is the company's first foray into offering a more wide-ranging Web-based application package, cutting the ties to desktop applications.
Salesforce.com says this isn't some marketing-driven move; its customers, through a Salesforce.com online forum called Idea Exchange, requested integration with Google Apps.
Salesforce.com won't charge for the integration with Google Apps. Existing customers will get it for no additional charge. So far, 10 Salesforce.com customers have tested the integration in a beta test mode, said Swensrud.
There is a profit motive here, however. The company will offer a service called Salesforce for Google Apps Supported that will include telephone support for end users, unified billing and provisioning, and additional application programming interfaces for a fee of $10 per user, per month.