As we all start to turn our thoughts to the new year, we here at salesforce.com are thinking about the next release, Spring '13. Yup, the Spring '13 Release Notes are up for preview and there are some pretty cool things to talk about. Here is just a couple of my highlights...
Canvas provides customers the ability to create context aware UI mashups in Salesforce. Want to see data from an external system right there in Salesforce, authenticated and filtered to the specific user? With the ability to place your Canvas application on a Visualforce page using the <apex:canvasApp> tag, developers now have the means to expose internal applications right there on your Account or Contact record page. Perhaps this is ERP sales data, or maybe it is exposing a file system that lives internally on your network. Have a look at the Canvas Developers Guide to get started with building your own Canvas applications.
Straight from the IdeaExchange, Chatter Tasks allow users to create tasks from the Chatter Publisher at the top of records in Salesforce. Bringing tasks into the collaboration framework further enhances the value of Chatter across the organisation.
Mobile first is the mantra of the product development teams at salesforce.com and the features that appear in Salesforce Touch this release are really great. Touch Dashboards, Lead and Case objects being available will further enhance the usability of this tool for the road warrior sales rep. Your custom apps are now also going mobile through the Touch interface, not just your Sales app but all apps in your Salesforce instance are about to be mobile. Yes, this also includes Visualforce tabs with this release, pretty cool stuff!
There are a bunch of API enhancements and even a shiny new API to play with in this release. The Tooling API is generally available for you to build developer tools for creating Force.com applications. I am very excited to see what people will be able to create with this one. Enhancements to SOAP and REST API's have been made, in addition to numerous new additions to the Metadata API. Check out this video on all the new features coming to the Salesforce Platform with the Spring '13 release in this video:
Of course there are so many more things to talk about so you will have to read and pick your own favourites. As you get back into the office following a great little holiday season, take a moment and catch up on some of the fantastic new features in the Spring '13 Release notes. What feature are you most excitied about?