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Salesforce.com launches AppExchange

Online marketplace for hosted business applications is open. Software from Adobe, Skype among 150 on-demand apps offered. Video: Benioff hatches software ecosystem

Dawn Kawamoto Former Staff writer, CNET News
Dawn Kawamoto covered enterprise security and financial news relating to technology for CNET News.
Dawn Kawamoto
Salesforce.com on Tuesday announced the launch of AppExchange, an online marketplace for hosted business software applications.

AppExchange marks an effort by Salesforce.com to expand its footprint in the growing arena of hosted business applications.

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Video: Benioff hatches software ecosystem
"The iPod is to the iTunes Music Store what AppExchange is to the Salesforce.com platform."

As previously reported, the new offering is designed to allow developers and Salesforce.com customers and partners the ability to distribute their applications via Salesforce's hosted-computing platform.

Adobe Systems, IP telephony company Skype Technologies and news archive company Factiva are among the various AppExchange partners, which are offering up to 150 business applications for the marketplace. The on-demand applications include finance, electronic signatures, document management, data cleansing and human resources.

A fee will typically be charged for applications sold by AppExchange partners, while those developed by Salesforce.com will currently be free, according to the company. There is no charge to customers who engage in a trial test of the applications distributed via AppExchange.