We knew Jive (news, site) was doing big things in the social business arena, but the recent release of the Jive Apps SDK for developers is a whole new can of worms. Along with new core features for their apps market, the company aims to change the way business applications are built, marketed and sold.

Jive Apps SDK

The Jive Apps SDK Beta, which is based on open standards including oAuth and OpenSocial,  is currently available to developers at no cost. Using the new SDK will give them a significant head start, as it allows applications to be tested in the upcoming Jive 5 platform (to be launched early next year). 

"Jive is committed to supporting open source and open standards," said Matt Tucker, Jive co-founder and CTO. "We believe that the future of enterprise is open and social, and have architected our products and platforms around these two key attributes."

Jive Apps Market

The notable new Jive Apps Market features include: 

  • Social from the ground up:  Developers will now be able to leverage Jive's activity stream to drive awareness of their own applications within the Jive environment. 
  • One-click purchasing: Employees are now able to find, try, buy and use business applications without waiting days for an administrator to provision them.
  • No more complex billing: There is no longer a need for developers to establish billing relationships with each individual enterprise and employee. Jive will now bill and collect the monthly and annual subscription revenues.
  • Transparent revenue sharing: Developers that build Jive Apps will not incur any upfront costs. The revenue generating from Jive Apps Market is shared, with 75 percent going to the developer and 25 percent to Jive.

What it Means for the Enterprise

Make no mistake, this isn't simply a case of hopping on the app store train. In fact, Robin Bordoli, Vice President of Product Marketing for Jive Apps, believes that this release will change the economics of how developers market and sell the next generation of social business applications. 

With the launch of the Jive Apps Market scheduled for early 2011, businesses will be able to select and adopt applications, as well as have a direct line of sight into usage, performance and budget control. This is similar to what Salesforce.com seems to be doing.  "That might just be the ticket some CIOs need to get unsatisfied business users off their back: Standardize the platform element to prevent a hodge podge architecture but shift the risk functional selection out of IT and back to business owners who can now make the decision on which application to select," said Sameer Patel of the Sovos Group.

Is this what Enterprise folks want? We'll have to wait and see, but so far Jive alone has signed up more than 100 partners, including Box, Gliffy, and UserVoice. Check out their way of doing business in here