Enterprise Apps

Second Wind for Mobile CRM?

A number of CRM vendors have released mobile applications in recent weeks — anecdotal evidence suggesting that the category is on an upswing.

Although this technology has been relatively stagnant since its inception, there have been recent indications of a resurgence. At the end of last year, for instance, Visiongain predicted that mobile CRM would finally overcome its years of false starts and be reasonably robust by 2007.

Up to this point, mobile CRM has accounted for less than 10 percent of total CRM revenues, but it will continue to show steady growth, according to Visiongain’s study, “Mobile CRM: Re-energizing the CRM.” Mobile CRM will exceed traditional CRM growth rates to account for 20 percent of total CRM revenues by 2010 as the market matures, it said.

The Year of Mobile CRM

“2006 will be the year of mobile CRM,” says David Appelbaum, vice president of marketing at Antenna Software, an on-demand provider of mobile CRM software.

Some of the resurgence can be attributed to improving synchronization technology and to the proliferation of wireless services. Also, a hyper-competitive global economy has led companies to conclude that their employees need to be wired 24-7.

There is also a change in companies’ expectations, Appelbaum told CRM Buyer, triggered in part by all the attention the on-demand delivery model has received in recent years.

Companies got caught up in the excitement, and once the platform was established, they asked themselves, “Why I am not seeing the results I want?”

However, “It is not about the platform,” Appelbaum contends. “It is about where you consume your data.”

New to Users

Over the last few weeks, a number of companies have introduced mobile offerings. Some are extensions of pre-existing applications, including industry-specific applications. Others are delving into entirely new areas, like Sona Mobile Holdings.

A provider of wireless technologies to the financial services, enterprise, entertainment and gaming markets, Sona is partnering with SugarCRM to provide wireless CRM functionality to SugarCRM’s customers.

Vettro, which provides on-demand mobile business applications, and Okere, a provider of client management solutions for the financial services industry, have released Vettro RainMaker 360FS — the first commercially available on-demand mobile client management application for wealth management, wholesaler and other financial services professionals, according to the companies.

StayinFront has rolled out its latest release of StayinFront CRM Mobile, which includes new features tailored to remote sales and field workers.

Finally, Onyx has unveiled Onyx Employee Portal Wireless (OEP Wireless) for Japan, available for Foma 3G and Mova 2G Series iMode devices.

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