Wednesday, June 27, 2012

How To Get Users on the IBM Connections Mobile Apps Fast!

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By now, you are aware of the new IBM Connections mobile apps for iOS and Android that were released a couple of weeks ago.

The feedback so far has been amazing! The ratings and comments in the app store have been fantastic.

Today, I wanted to share a quick tip with you so you can help everyone in your organization get started with the mobile app. In fact, I highlighted this in my original blog post and I've received several questions already on how to do this.

The new mobile apps now support app provisioning via a link. This means that you can post a link in Connections or send it via email and when users click on it from their mobile device, the app is immediately launched and pre-configured for your server.

To do this, simply build a URL similar to the one below:

ibmscp://com.ibm.connections/launch?accountserver=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.bleedyellow.com%2Fmobile&accountuser=luis_benitez%40us.ibm.com&accountname=BleedYellow

and then send an email to your users and ask them to click on the link, for example:

Click this link to get started!

Notice that the URL contains the user ID of the person and the values are URL encoded. The URL above would be my unique URL to configure the app with BleedYellow.

When the user clicks on that link, they are immediately brought over to the IBM Connections Mobile app and this is what they see:


Notice that everything is pretty much configured. The end user doesn't have to figure out what the URL is to their server. At this point all the user has to do is enter their password and off they go! Pretty cool, huh? The same URL will work both for the Android and iOS apps.

Enjoy!

Monday, June 18, 2012

IDC Names IBM Worldwide Marketshare Leader in Social Software

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IDC today announced that for the third consecutive year, IBM is ranked number one in worldwide market share for enterprise social software. According to IDC's analysis of 2011 revenue, IBM grew faster than its competitors and nearly two times faster than the overall market which grew approximately 40 percent. Needless to say, I'm super excited about these results and being part of the team.

According to IDC, the enterprise social platforms market is expected to reach $4.5 billion by 2016, representing growth of 43 percent over the next four years.

This week, the industry is meeting over at the Enterprise 2.0 Conference in Boston to continue the conversation on how to accelerate innovation, optimize your workforce and drive adoption with enterprise social media. There will also be sessions on big data and social CRM. Follow the conversation via the hashtag #e2conf in Twitter. I'll be at the conference tomorrow and Wednesday, so if you are there, feel free to reach out!

Check out the following infographic which highlights how IBM social software is used worldwide (click for larger image)

IBM is the Social Business Leader
Today, more than 35 percent of Fortune 100 companies have adopted IBM's social software offerings including eight of the top 10 retailers and banks. IBM's social networking platform, IBM Connections, allows for instant collaboration with one simple click and the ability to build social communities both inside and outside the organization to increase customer loyalty and speed business results.

In the past year, new IBM Connections clients include Lowe's Home Improvement, Electrolux, TD Bank, Newly Weds Foods, Russell's Convenience stores, Bayer Material Science, The Ottawa Hospital, Premier Healthcare Alliance, Earthwatch, and the law offices of LaVan & Neidenberg. Check out more customers here.

To view the report from IDC, click here.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Demo: IBM Connections Mobile App for Android

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IBM today released a new update for the IBM Connections App for Android mobile devices. Back in August 2011, the first version of this app was released to the Android Marketplace and now today the latest update for this app is now available for download from Google Play.

Looking at the reviews for the app, so far the uptake has been tremendously positive. And I'm sure that with this update more and more people will enjoy using this app.

This update has a massive list of new features and improvements:

  • New and improved user experience
  • New getting started tutorial
  • New interface for Profiles
  • Native integration of Profiles with device (e.g. save contact in device for access offline, share contact, click-to-call, etc)
  • Generate QR codes for contacts
  • New search capabilities, including type-ahead search!
  • New cached views for faster response times
  • Support for multiple IBM Connections accounts (e.g. inside/outside firewall)
  • Support to access files offline (and encrypted) on the device
  • Ability to share files with communities
  • Save pictures locally (offline)
  • Ability for administrators to control branding/look-n-feel from server
  • Ability  for administrators to add additional menu items from server
  • Ability for administrators to add a custom end user agreement
  • Ability for administrator to customize the login form
  • App provisioning via email
  • Support for Single Sign On solutions such as WebSEAL/TAM, Siteminder, and SPNEGO

As you can see, this is a massive release, so make sure you go out to Google Play right now and download the latest update. And if you haven't installed it, go ahead and give it a try. The app is pre-configured for Greenhouse, so simply enter your credentials and off you go.

Check out this demo that I recorded recently giving you a brief preview of some of the features included in the app:

To download the IBM Connections Mobile App for Android for free, click here. (By the way, if you are interested in the iOS app for iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch devices, click here)

Enjoy! (in the meantime, we'll keep working on the next release!)

New iPad / iPhone App Available for IBM Connections

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IBM today released the latest update of the IBM Connections Mobile app for iOS ( iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch). The universal app for IBM Connections was initially released late last year. This release delivers on the roadmap shown at earlier this year at Lotusphere 2012 and is the Spring 2012 release. Check out this long list of new features in this:

  • New and improved user experience
  • New getting started tutorial
  • New interface for Profiles
  • Native integration of Profiles with device (e.g. save contact in device for access offline, share contact, click-to-call, etc)
  • New search capabilities, including type-ahead search!
  • New cached views for faster response times
  • Support for multiple IBM Connections accounts (e.g. inside/outside firewall)
  • Support to access files offline (and encrypted) on the device
  • Ability to share files with communities
  • Save pictures locally (offline)
  • App provisioning by email
  • Ability for administrators to control branding/look-n-feel from server
  • Ability  for administrators to add additional menu items from server
  • Ability for administrators to add a custom end user agreement
  • Ability for administrator to customize the login form
  • Support for Single Sign On solutions such as WebSEAL/TAM, Siteminder, and SPNEGO

As you can see, this is a massive release, so make sure you go out to the iTunes App Store right now and download the latest update. And if you haven't installed it, go ahead and give it a try. The app is pre-configured for Greenhouse, so simply enter your credentials and off you go.

I've captured a demo showing these latest updates which you can see below:

Get the IBM Connections app for iPad now for free from here!

Enjoy! (in the meantime, we'll keep working on the next release!)

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

I'm Speaking At Enterprise 2.0 Conference in Boston!

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In a couple of weeks, I'll be flying to Boston to attend and speak at the Enterprise 2.0 Conference in Boston. I've been going to the conference for several years now and it's always a great experience. Getting a chance to meet others in the industry, share ideas, and learn from the community is tremendously valuable to me.

For the first time, I'll be speaking this year along with my colleague Suzanne Livingston. Our topic is:

Title: Setting Up Communities to Solve Your Biggest Challenges
Location: Room 210
Date: Tuesday, June 19, 2012, 2:30 PM-3:30 PM

Abstract: User communities powered by enterprise social software offer a powerful way to drive results to your bottom line. This session covers the best ways to set up communities within IBM Connections to achieve a variety of results, whether it's increased sales, improved support processes, or faster access to expertise. Specifically, we'll show trends on how organizations are setting up various types of communities, such as customer support communities that lower costs by turning customers into support agents, collaboration communities that unleash the ideas and expertise, and more.

As Suzanne and I get ready for the session, we want to hear from you! I've captured two questions below and some responses so far. We would like to hear from you either via Twitter or simply respond in the comments below. Take a peek at the questions below:

If you haven't registered yet, go ahead and register here. If you are going to the conference, see you in a couple of weeks. If you won't be going, make sure you to follow the conversation via Twitter using this hashtag: #e2conf.