Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff: End Coming for Windows in Enterprise

10/22/12Follow @jpruth

If you ask cloud computing evangelist Marc Benioff about the future of Windows and PCs in the enterprise world it comes as no surprise that he sees this era rapidly coming to an end.

That change, he believes, may be closer than ever if this week’s release of Windows 8 gives chief information officers the pretext to rethink which technologies are used in their companies.

At Friday’s Cloudforce conference in New York, Salesforce chairman and CEO Benioff talked up the services his company provides to the likes of Coca-Cola, Virgin Atlantic Airways, and Toyota. For example, Salesforce (NYSE: CRM) helped Coca-Cola develop software that lets consumers create and purchase their own beverage blends at certain vending machines and share those recipes online with friends.

During his keynote speech, Benioff brought out Michael Lazerow, co-founder of New York–based social media marketing company Buddy Media, which Salesforce acquired in June for $690 million. Buddy Media is being combined with social media monitoring company Radian6, a previous Salesforce acquisition, to offer their services under one umbrella, Salesforce marketing cloud.

Lazerow echoed Benioff’s sentiments about changes underway as wireless devices and cloud computing offer businesses new options to interact in-house and with their customers. “The largest companies in the world have a desire to innovate,” Lazerow said. “They have legacy systems they have to deal with but they want to transform their companies.”

That transformation seems to already be happening thanks to widespread personal use of tablets and smartphones by professionals. Benioff spoke with reporters and … Next Page »

João-Pierre S. Ruth is the editor of Xconomy New York. He can be reached at jpruth@xconomy.com and followed on Twitter @jpruth. Follow @jpruth

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