Home Bungee Labs Evolves to Compete With Salesforce & Others

Bungee Labs Evolves to Compete With Salesforce & Others

Bungee Labs announced today at Web 2.0 Expo that it is expanding its hosting options, and also looking into open source as a way to connect with the developer community. Bungee Labs’ main product is Bungee Connect, an end-to-end, cloud-based development platform for web applications. We covered the launch of the public beta of Connect in February this year (we also covered the launch of the company at last year’s Web 2.0 Expo). Essentially, the news today is the continued evolution of the company as it competes against established SaaS companies like Salesforce, Oracle and Microsoft. [Update: Bungee labs wrote to clarify that they don’t consider themselves competitors with Oracle]

Bungee Labs told us in a briefing yesterday that Connect is aimed at the SME market, and they are competing with the likes of Salesforce on CRM apps. Today’s announcement lets organizations host their applications in three ways:

1) on self-managed infrastructure running the Bungee Application Server;

2) on the multi-tenant Bungee Grid at datacenters in the United States, Europe;

3) on the Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2), but managed by Bungee Labs.

Here’s a graphic that illustrates this:

The pricing model is also attractive, and according to Bungee Labs spokespeople, much cheaper than Salesforce:

Bungee Labs is also looking into making some of their community source code available, for the Bungee Application Server under several software source code licenses. They have made two software licenses available in draft form for review and discussion. However they are not keen to completely open source the platform.

All of these moves – the federated hosting, utility pricing model, looking into open source – are designed to find ways to differentiate Bungee Connect in what is a tough SME market dominated by Salesforce and other big companies like Oracle and Microsoft. We were told that Bungee has 3,500 developers on its platform currently, which suggests that it needs to find ways to get more developer support and build its brand against stiff competition. Right now Bungee Connect is a sophisticated technical platform – we have covered it now 3 times on RWW, so it’s obviously impressive – but one gets the feeling that competing against established brands like Salesforce requires innovative marketing too.

Federated hosting, low pricing and perhaps eventually open sourcing parts of the platform are good moves – but the bottom line is that those features need to attract new customers. It’ll be worth checking back on Bungee Labs again at next year’s Web 2.0 Expo!

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