MicroStrategy has unveiled a Cloud-based service to enable users to add Facebook data to their enterprise applications and also interact with it without leaving the system.
The new Gateway for Facebook converts the site’s social graph structure into a format that supports the relational databases that underpin enterprise packages ranging from CRM to marketing, service, sales and loyalty. It also supports mobile application formats.
Michael Saylor, MicroStrategy’s chairman and chief executive, said: "CEOs across many industries are committing their enterprises to establishing social media strategies, but very few have a clear idea of what to do, and even fewer have the technology to carry out their vision. We believe intelligent social applications, anchored by Gateway for Facebook, will be a revolutionary new class of apps that are inherently friendly."
As an example of a possible ‘intelligent social application’, he cited a hypothetical mobile phone company, which could provide customers with a package that synchronised itself with Facebook data in order to keep the contact information of all their Facebook friends up-to-date. By simply accessing their name, users could then call, email or text their friends without having to look up their details or keep track of any changes.
The Gateway for Facebook service can undertake rich data queries and also automatically combine multiple overlapping queries into single application programming interfaces to minimise the load on Facebook and enhance performance.
The offering includes an operational database to store social graph data in order to ensure it is always available to relevant applications even if connectivity to Facebook is limited. It also has self-monitoring functionality to ensure that data requests are not blocked because there are too many of them.
The Gateway is likewise build on a massively parallel architecture to make it scalable and it employs Facebook’s open graph application programming interfaces.