Salesforce launches private beta of Chatter

When Salesforce.com announced Chatter in a rambling keynote from Marc Benioff in November the application was defined in more Web 2.0 terms. Now it's clear that Chatter is being positioned as a SharePoint and Lotus Notes killer.

Updated: Salesforce.com said Wednesday that it has launched a private beta of its Chatter service, which integrates the feature and feeds from services such as Facebook and Twitter.

Clarification: Salesforce.com mentioned Google Buzz in its release, but the company says:

Chatter at this time it doesn’t integrate with Google Buzz.  Google Buzz was used in the press release as an example of a popular social consumer network.

The company in a statement also positioned Chatter as "a new level of collaboration" that will "accelerate the demise of Microsoft SharePoint and Lotus Notes." Is there anyone NOT targeting SharePoint these days?

About 100 folks from companies like Reed Exhibitions, Schumacher Group and TransUnion are going through the private beta. The beta program for Chatter spans multiple verticals including tech, financial services and manufacturing.

Chatter is expected to be generally available in 2010.

The positioning of Chatter on Wednesday was notable. When Salesforce.com announced Chatter in a rambling keynote from Marc Benioff in November the application was defined in more Web 2.0 terms. Now it's clear that Chatter is being positioned as a SharePoint and Lotus Notes killer.

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