Salesforce offers Chatter as standalone collaboration app

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San Francisco—Customer relationship management company has spun off its Chatter social collaboration service, previously available only to users of the company's CRM solution, as a free standalone product.

Chatter, introduced last June, is an in-house social networking platform that allows employees in sales, marketing and other departments to weigh in on campaigns and opportunities. Salesforce is planning two TV spots during the Super Bowl broadcast Feb. 6 to support the launch ofthe product.

The service was augmented last month with Salesforce's purchase of Dimdim, a video-conferencing service with instant messaging, for $31 million.

Meanwhile, David Sacks, CEO of Yammer, a similar product, criticized the new edition of Chatter. "We estimate they are at least 18 months behind Yammer in terms of the product," Sacks said, in a statement. "It is reminiscent of Yammer circa 2009."

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