Sugar 6 hits beta milestone

SugarCRM's forthcoming 6 upgrade features improved performance, navigation, ease-of-use and mobile phone support.Sugar 6 -- which officially entered beta today -- features a new user interface and redesigned navigation system with a Shortcut Bar that offers single click access to common tasks.

SugarCRM's forthcoming 6 upgrade features improved performance, navigation, ease-of-use and mobile phone support.

Sugar 6 -- which officially entered beta today -- features a new user interface and redesigned navigation system with a Shortcut Bar that offers single click access to common tasks.

It is a "persistent toolbar throughout the application that allows users to perform common tasks in one click, including creating an account, contact, sales opportunity, document, note, task or logging a meeting or call," according to a release issued by the company Tuesday at its annual SugarCon conference in SF. "Usability tests show that Sugar 6 requires 20 percent fewer clicks to navigate than in previous versions."

The software's new "Shortcut Bar" offers a "context-aware Global Search field which filters search results based on the module in use (e.g., Contacts, Opportunities and Accounts) and produces results without leaving the page," the release also stated.

Version 6 also features support for offline client capabilities and native web application support for leading smartphone platforms. The former release enabled customers to use a mobile browser to access the CRM system; version 6 provides support for native applications running on the iPhone and iPad, Blackberry and Google Android-based devices.

SugarCRM plans to release the finished product in July.

The company claims it signed 600 new corporate customers in the first quarter of 2010 and has more than 6,000 customers globally.