In November 2017, we announced the availability of the new Watson Salesforce SDK. There has been a lot of excitement around this as it is just one of the many exciting things resulting from the IBM & Salesforce partnership. You can view several of the reference links below on the SDK that discuss getting started, provide code examples, step-by-step guidance and a lab. This blog is focused on the value that the SDK brings to your business. Developers see the great value in this asset with respect to their work, but the goal here is to ensure that non-developers understand the SDK’s true value to the business.

What is the Watson Salesforce SDK?

The SDK is an asset. Its a software development kit that allows Salesforce developers to integrate Watson AI into their Salesforce applications more quickly and easily. In simple terms, its a bunch of pre-packaged code that developers can use to quickly and properly access the Watson APIs.

What is the Value of using the SDK?

The short version is that the SDK saves time and money and can help improve overall quality. Integrating Watson using the Apex codebase typically requires hundreds of lines of code to be written. Using the SDK, you can accomplish the same feat with as few as five lines of code! As the SDK provides a huge starting point to integrate Watson into Salesforce applications, it allows developers to work more efficiently and spend more time focusing on the objectives and quality of the business application, by providing the necessary assets for faster, smarter development (see list below).

What does the Watson Salesforce SDK provide?

  • Provides Core SDK + libraries for Watson services
    • Discovery, Conversation, Natural Language Understanding, Natural Language Classifier, Tone Analyzer, Personality Insights, Visual Recognition, Speech to Text, Text to Speech, Language Translator
  • Pre-built Classes – We simplified your development work turning hundreds of lines of code into as few as 5 lines of code!
  • Pre-built request header methods => handle custom headers with just 1 line of code
  • API Responses provided as objects => avoids the chore of converting/formatting raw JSON as this is all done for you
  • Pre-built end-to-end functional testing examples => 1 line of code is all it takes to get going
  • Pre-built assertions for Unit Testing => 1 line of code is all it takes to get going
  • Available as unmanaged package on Github
    • Deploy manually through Ant or Salesforce DX
    • Deploy automatically with “Deploy to SFDX” button

Should I use the SDK for my Salesforce applications to integrate Watson?

Yes, it’s a no-brainer! The SDK provides developers with all the code and example documentation they need to get started quickly. It exponentially reduces their development effort thus reducing development costs. The SDK provides thousands of lines of code that developers can leverage to start accessing Watson from within Salesforce.

Learn more about the Watson Salesforce SDK


About The Author
Marc Nehme is a Chief Architect in the Watson Embed organization at IBM. His primary focus is working with strategic partners to help them achieve significant business value by embedding and scaling Watson solutions across their organizations. Marc has been in the IBM Watson family since 2014 and previously focused his efforts in the IBM Watson Delivery organization where he drove various customer projects from concept to production. You can follow Marc here.

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