Salesforce London’s Calling 2018: Todd Talks Einstein and Offline Mobile Apps

rsz_28423962_2013726415548367_5500423501217783306_oLast month, the third annual edition of Europe’s largest community-led event for Salesforce professionals took place in London. London’s Calling is an event designed to bring together anyone working with Salesforce to network, share ideas, solve problems, and learn new things.

We were particularly excited about the event, as our Lead Mobile Technical Architect Todd Halfpenny was not only part of the team in charge, but was also presenting for the third year running.

The rest of the great organising and volunteering team was diverse, including Simon Goodyear, Kerry Townsend, Amanda Beard-Neilson, Francis Pindar, Jodi Wagner, and Lauren Touyet. We’re very proud of our contribution to these Salesforce community events, which also extends to our sponsorship of the London Developer User Group.

2018 was the best year yet

The event seems to be getting bigger and better every year, and 2018 promised plenty of interesting attractions and engaging sessions for attendees to get involved in.

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How Salesforce Partners Can Work Closer Together to Ensure Customer Success

AppExchangeTowards the end of last year it was revealed that 87% of Salesforce customers and 89% of Fortune 100 companies are now using applications from the Salesforce AppExchange.

This is great news, because it means that large enterprises are beginning to see the value in leveraging Salesforce’s multi-cloud and platform offerings as part of their digital transformation strategies.

These forward-thinking customers are now becoming more astute and, as a result, more demanding in their uses of this technology. But that’s putting huge pressure on Salesforce partners to deliver challenging projects at speed and without risk.

Business leaders also know they need a wide variety of supporting technology solutions too if they want to get the most value out of their multi-cloud infrastructures. That means Independent Software Vendors (ISVs) like us here at MobileCaddy, and Systems Integrators (SIs), are having to work together closely to ensure their Salesforce customers’ needs are being met.

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Partitioned Versioning Enables Risk-free Production Upgrades to Salesforce Mobile Apps

Traditional deployments of updates to mobile applications are hard, and harder still in the enterprise world. Mass, uncontrolled updates to users are risky at best. Partitioned Versioning, with MobileCaddy, enables a low impact, highly iterative, approach to application update deployments which minimises the risks.

Mobile applications need to be updated for many reasons. It’s common for an initial release of a new app to contain bugs that weren’t caught in sandbox and developer environments, for example, or for a misunderstanding of workflow to pass through the UAT stage unnoticed.

Beyond this, once an app is live and mature, it will still need to evolve in line with many factors including (but not limited to): new business requirements, regulatory updates, alignment with new OS and hardware capabilities, and of course in our world modifications to support new Salesforce releases.

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How MobileCaddy Aids Bugless Salesforce Releases

We’re all aware of the thrice-yearly Salesforce releases, and how they’re unstoppable forces. We’re all also aware that bugs exist, and that any bug found post-launch is a lot more expensive than one found during testing. Here’s a quick story on one such bug, and how MobileCaddy helped to get it removed from the Winter ‘18 release.

Whenever Salesforce patches make their way into pre-release orgs our daily test runs kick off and identify the change. These tests run on 15+ org setups and report back any issues that might have been observed. One such observation was reported back during the early days of Summer ‘17 patch rollouts into pre-release. The issue manifested itself initially as the inability to complete the authentication flow on iOS devices built with Salesforce Mobile SDK v4.0.2 and lower.

During the investigations into the issue, we raised a notification on our trust site to keep our partners and customers aware of the risk of the behaviour. We also developed some internal work-arounds. If the issue wasn’t fixed prior to Summer ‘17 making it’s way into our partners’ sandboxes, these would let us unblock them from their development and testing processes.

We also discovered that the bug broke the vanilla experience of browsing standard Visualforce pages on iOS Safari; this could be bad if it got through into production.

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Sealing Buy-In for Salesforce Mobile Apps with PoCs

Demand for sophisticated Salesforce mobile apps continues to rise. But any mobile project still needs to be approved, and pitching a mobile experience with UI mock-ups and PowerPoint slides won’t do your app justice. Whether you’re working internally or are a partner pitching to a client, a Proof of Concept (PoC) is a powerful way to demonstrate that an app can meet its requirements. This article will highlight the key benefits PoCs can bring, as well as examples and tips for maximising their impact.

Why bother with Proof of Concepts?

PoC applications are pivotal to any mobile app proposal, allowing the demonstration of fundamental concepts and principles. Including a PoC as part of a pitch is a great way to put something tangible literally in the hands of the decision makers. It’s an opportunity to reaffirm confidence to key stakeholders, particularly where critical technical requirements come into play.

 “The Proof of Concept system gives stakeholders a chance to understand the capabilities and limitations of the system.” - Anderson IT

A common scenario we’ve come across at MobileCaddy is the desire of our partners to reassure clients that fully network resilient mobile apps for Salesforce are possible. This example is also applicable to internal development teams working in larger organisations.

Our experience with offline-first architecture has proven this to be a grave concern for enterprises. As such, a PoC demonstrating exactly this functionality has been fundamental in progressing conversations beyond these sticking points, and further onto the real topic of how value can be gained from taking Salesforce operations mobile.

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Making the Right Choice for Mobile Salesforce Community Applications

The Salesforce Community Cloud allows organisations to bring together employees, partners, third-party workers, B2B customers, and even consumers. This article will explore three different approaches to delivering mobile Salesforce community applications, and will help readers choose the most suitable option.


What is a Salesforce community? 

A Salesforce community is an online platform for organisations to connect employees, partners, and customers, while providing seamless access to the data and records they need to get work done or complete tasks.

community_cloud_rszBuilt on the Salesforce Community Cloud, they offer real-time engagement and the ability to share any file, data, or record anytime and from anywhere.

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How Non-Functional Testing Enables the Delivery of Defect-Free Salesforce Mobile Applications

All applications need rigorous testing, and non-functional testing is often viewed as the less important half of a whole when compared to functional elements. In reality, though, non-functional testing is crucial for creating a defect-free mobile app. This article will highlight the importance of initial non-functional testing and offer advice for carrying out the necessary processes.

non_functional_sizeIt’s common to focus on functional requirements and usability when testing an application, areas which are often where most of the effort is spent once an app has moved into the testing, QA, and UAT phases of a project.

Before even thinking about any functional app code, though, it’s important to test all the app’s non-functional elements first. If those aren’t prioritised, not only will it have a knock-on effect on all other testing, it will also impact the app’s ability to function once deployed.

Defining, and clearly understanding, non-functional testing processes is the key to releasing a defect-free mobile app into production. When separated into two groups, these can be referred to as ‘initial’ non-functional tests, and ‘running app’ non-functional tests. But before we go into more detail, it’s necessary to understand why non-functional testing is unique for mobile.

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July 2017: What’s New with MobileCaddy and Your Salesforce Mobile Apps

The Latest from the MobileCaddy Product Team - July 2017

One of the most exciting things about our Application Delivery Framework (ADF) is that it’s constantly growing and evolving, to allow our partners and customers to push the boundaries of what can be achieved with mobile apps on the Salesforce platform. As such, it’s vital that we help our community stay abreast of all the new MobileCaddy features and updates as they’re released.

With that in mind,  I’ve decided to record and publish my regular discussions with Paul, our CTO, Todd, our Chief Mobile Technical Architect, and Frank, our Lead Product Engineer. In these sessions we’ll be covering what’s new with MobileCaddy, and will be sharing this with you to provide a first-hand look at everything we’ve been working hard on to improve.

So what’s new with MobileCaddy this month?

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Keeping Your Salesforce Mobile Apps Working Through OS Version Updates

Changes frequently occur to mobile operating systems outside your control, and your awareness, which can cause serious problems for your applications. When those apps are supporting critical business processes, it’s vital you’re constantly testing to ensure their performance is never compromised. This article will outline an approach to prevent OS version updates, upgrades, and other environment changes from affecting your enterprise mobile apps.


Apple_AndroidOperating and supporting any enterprise application in the context of mobile is challenging, because you don’t have control over that app’s underlying operating systems, nor can you predict new updates, upgrades, or patches being released.

This presents a problem for those responsible, because changes to an OS can cause mobile apps to suffer in their performance, or even stop working entirely. When those apps have been deployed into functions which are critical to the daily running of the business, that effectively renders the employees or community users relying on the app incapable as well, which simply can’t be allowed to happen.

So, firstly… Understand your app

You need to be aware of all the various components which make up your application, how they interact with each other, and what relationship they have with the OS.

Any number of things within your app can change without your knowledge, and the various elements and supported systems mean that continual testing is an absolute necessity to avoid app failure. This becomes even more important when applications are supporting business critical processes and workflows.

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Empowering a Nationwide Nonprofit Service with the Salesforce Community Cloud



StreetLink is a UK-based nonprofit service which allows members of the public to alert their local authorities to rough sleepers in their area. The service has helped thousands of people find support and shelter thanks to a number of available channels of communication.

Those channels of communication function through various technologies, with a phone line, website, and mobile app each enabling members of the public to contact StreetLink, who then pass the information to the local outreach teams to locate and provide rough sleepers with assistance.

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