(Top && My Favorite) Features in Winter 18′ Release #LEX

It’s that time of year, where the whole Salesforce Fraternity will be waiting like a kid waiting for the Christmas presents.Ho Ho Ho!!! And boy oh boy Salesforce Santa does not disappoint you. And as usual this time too Salesforce is back for the Winter Release with really nice bells and whistles (updates and new features). And do check out the WINTER’18’s Astro themed Logo. In this article I will be walking you through the top most features of the release. Let’s Dive !!!

Lightning Experience Gets a New Look and Feel

Based on the feedback given, Salesforce has improved information density, legibility, contrast, and even added a splash of color. That means less time scrolling and scanning and more time focused on what matters most. This change applies to Lightning Experience only.

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Here’s a closer look at what’s changed.

  • More information density and less white space, so you can see more of what you need without scrolling.
  • Improved legibility (using font size and color) to draw attention to what’s most important.
  • Better contrast between foreground and background, making it easier to scan and scroll while staying focused on what you need. They even added color and a background image inspired by own Trailhead.

You don’t need to do anything to start enjoying these enhancements. If you like, though, you can change the background image and blue color to a neutral gray.

In Setup, enter Themes and Branding in the Quick Find box, then select Themes and Branding, and select Hide.

Leads: Speed Through Lead Conversions with Added Flexibility

Our reps now save time when they convert leads. The new lead conversion process matches leads with contacts and accounts already in Salesforce. At the same time, reps create an opportunity or select one already in the works. This change applies to Lightning Experience only.

Added Flexibility for Lead Conversion
Added Flexibility for Lead Conversion

With the new efficient conversion window, reps can quickly:

  • Create an account, contact, and opportunity from the lead data with a single click
  • Update the values provided from the lead for each new record
  • Choose the record types
  • Relate the lead to existing account, contact, and opportunity records matched to the lead using your duplicate management rules
  • View details of the matched records
  • Search for more records to relate to the lead
  • Create a follow-up task

These features appear in separate expandable sections for accounts, contacts, and opportunities. In one convenient location, reps can convert leads however they wish.

Edit More Records at Once with Mass Inline Editing

Your reps can now update up to 200 records without leaving a list view. This feature is new in Lightning Experience.

Select multiple records in a list view and then click the edit icon next to the field you want to update. Enter the new value for the field, and click Apply to update the selected records.

Mass Inline Editing for List Views
Mass Inline Editing for List Views

Chart Enhancements for Reports and Dashboards in Lightning Experience

Visualizing business data is understanding business data, so we’ve improved charts to help you see it better. These changes apply to Lightning Experience only.

Donut Charts Display Values or Percentages : Label groups in donut charts with their true values or percentages.

Donut chart with percentages
View Metric and Gauge Chart Numbers in Full,or Shorten Them;Show or Hide a Value Range: Shorten numbers to see approximations that take up less space (for example, 1,876 becomes 1.9k), or view the full number for to-the-digit accuracy. Show the value range to provide more context to your data, or hide it to focus on the numbers themselves.
Gauge chart toggling shortened numbers and rangers on and off
Work Better with Redesigned Chart Icons : We redesigned the chart icons for adding a dashboard component or report chart. Here are the new icons in their default state (1), hover state (2), selected state (3), and unavailable state (4).
New Chart Icons
Display Up to 500 Groups in Line and Bar Charts in Dashboards : For line and bar charts, including cumulative line charts and stacked bar charts, we’ve upped the number of displayed groups from 200 to 500! All other chart types still show 200 groups. This change was introduced in a Summer ’17 patch.
Add Up to Four Measures to Horizontal Bar and Stacked Horizontal Bar Charts in Dashboard Components : To display four measures, the component’s source report must have four measures. Horizontal bar and stacked horizontal bar charts continue to support up to two groups or now up to two measures, but don’t support both at once. If you show multiple groups, you can’t display multiple measures, and vice versa.
Add a Second Line to a Line Chart : Line charts in dashboard components now support up to two measures. The second measure is drawn as a second line. To display two measures, the component’s source report must have two measures.

Open Reports in Quip

Take full advantage of Quip’s living documents by working with connected report data in a Quip spreadsheet. Plus, work with Quip’s productivity features: @Mention colleagues to discuss data through real-time discussion threads. Harness hundreds of spreadsheet functions. And add spreadsheets into other Quip docs to add data to your context, or context to your data.This feature is new in Lightning Experience.
Opening a report in Quip

To work with report data in Quip, click Open in Quip. If prompted, sign in to Quip.

Opening a report in Quip connects the report with a Quip spreadsheet. Once connected, the spreadsheet automatically gets refreshed report data from Salesforce, and the spreadsheet links back to records in Salesforce. For example, Account Name columns link back to Account records.

Manage connected report data in the Quip spreadsheet by clicking Live Data and hovering over the name of the connected Salesforce report. From the Live Data menu, you can:

  • Open the report in Salesforce.
  • Manually refresh the report to get the latest data in Quip.
  • Turn automatic report refreshes on or off. When automatic refresh is on, then Quip gets the latest refreshed report data from Salesforce whenever you open the spreadsheet.
  • Delete the connection between the Salesforce report and the Quip spreadsheet. Deleting the connection doesn’t delete the Salesforce report nor the Quip spreadsheet.

Create Click-to-Dial Phone Numbers with the lightning:clickToDial Component

Developers and partners can use the Lightning component lightning:clickToDial in Lightning pages and apps to make calls through Open CTI, Salesforce Voice, and other CTI providers. When phone numbers appear on the page, agents can simply click to dial the number. This component is similar to the support:clickToDial component used in Visualforce pages. This change applies to Lightning Experience only.

Keep these things in mind when working with the component.

  • The lightning:clickToDial component respects existing click-to-dial commands for Open CTI, such as enableClickToDial, disableClickToDial, and onClickToDial.
  • You can add this component to any Lightning page in any Lightning Experience app.
  • The component doesn’t support iFrames, so you can’t use it in utilities, such as a phone utility, or Lightning Out apps that are hosted on iFrames.

Chat with Customers in Lightning Experience

We captured the best of Live Agent and gave it a whole new look and feel in Lightning Experience. Agents get a larger chat window, so they have more room to use the chat features they know and love.

You don’t even have to regenerate your deployment code if you already use Omni-Channel routing for chats—simply head over to the Lightning App Manager and edit your Lightning console app. Add the Omni-Channel utility and then add Live Chat Transcripts to your selected items. Make sure you have a chat button that uses Omni-Channel routing, because Live Agent routing isn’t supported in Lightning Experience.

Looking Sharp in the Console: Gone are the days when chat was delegated to the top corner of the console.

Live Agent in the Lightning Service Console.

By default, the agent chat window is large and in charge in the center of the agent’s view, complete with a chat header to help agents differentiate between chats (1). You also get past chats, which lets your agents view previous chats with a repeat customer (2). Agents can also find their chat features above the text box, right where they should be (3).

Ping! New Notifications and System Messages : Notifications help agents multitask better in Lightning Experience, whether they’re handling one chat or many. Chat requests appear in the Omni-Channel utility in the Lightning Service Console.

Chat request in the Omni-Channel utility.

When the chat’s in progress, notifications show up in the agent’s console a bit differently than in Salesforce Classic.

Whether a chat agent is looking at the chat tab or not, the chat tab is highlighted when there are unread chats.Lightning console tabs with the chat transcript tab highlighted.System notifications appear in the chat transcript.A chat with system messages for file transfer.

In-progress actions are clearly displayed by chat feature. Agents can close the popovers without canceling the action.

Confirmation messages at the top of the screen let agents know exactly what’s going on.Chat with a failed file transfer message.

Merge Person Accounts in Lightning Experience

Sales reps can now view duplicates on person accounts in Lightning Experience just as they can on business accounts, contacts, and leads. Users with permission can merge person accounts, too. This change applies to Lightning Experience only.

  1. In Setup, make sure that a duplicate rule for person accounts is active.
  2. Configure the Potential Duplicates component in Lightning App Builder.
Your sales team sees this alert when they view a person account with a duplicate.
An alert about a duplicate person account

Dynamic Branding: One Community, with a Different Look for Each Audience

With branding sets, you can change the appearance and style of your community pages based on the audience viewing the page. No need to create individual communities for each customer or business need. Now you build your community once, and simply style it differently for each audience.
Branding sets take advantage of criteria-based audiences in the same way as page variations. Just as you can create several page variations and target them at different audiences, you can create different sets of branding properties to produce a unique look and feel for specific audiences.

In Community Builder, you can:

  • Manage branding sets from the Branding panel (1).
  • Create a set of branding properties (2).
  • Create or assign an audience to your branding set (3).
  • Switch between a tile or list view of branding sets (4).

Branding Sets area

Each community must have a branding set that’s assigned to the default audience. It acts as your fallback branding. It’s what people who don’t belong to a specific audience see. If you export a template, only the default branding set is exported.


Acme Learning offers professional training courses to employees of large corporations and to the general public. They want to provide targeted branding experiences for each corporation, which combine Acme Learning’s branding with the corporation’s branding. And for non-corporate customers, they want to display their standard Acme Learning branding.

Using a single community, they create a series of branding sets and create and assign audiences to each. So when Salesforce employees visit the Acme Learning community, they see pages styled with the Salesforce logo, colors, and fonts. Similarly, if employees of Northern Trail Outfitters visit the Home page, they see the same content but with different fonts, colors, and logo. And members of the general public—the default audience—see pages styled with Acme Learning’s standard branding.

Acme Learning branding sets

Visualforce: Lightning Experience Readiness and Styling

Use Visualforce to develop custom pages for your org. In this release, changes are focused on making it easier to use Visualforce pages seamlessly in Lightning Experience. This change applies to Lightning Experience, Salesforce Classic, and all versions of the Salesforce1 mobile app.

Lightning Components: Security, Developer Productivity, and UI Power and Flexibility

The Lightning Component framework powers Lightning Experience and Salesforce1. Use the framework to build mobile apps and pages in Lightning Experience, Salesforce1, Salesforce Classic, and Communities.

Use out-of-the-box components or build your own components with JavaScript, HTML, CSS, Apex, or any web-enabled code.

AppExchange lets you install components created by Salesforce partners or publish your own components.

For more information, refer to the Lightning Components Developer Guide.

Salesforce DX is built on these core principles:

  • Source code drives everything.
  • Metadata and code are modular.
  • Environments are easily created and disposable.
  • Development is organized around team collaboration.
  • Development is based on open standards and extensibility.
  • Flexible packaging supports an agile distribution model.
  • Processes and tools facilitate continuous integration and continuous delivery.

Salesforce DX shifts the source of truth from the org to the version control system. By managing your Salesforce code outside of the runtime environment, you can harness industry-standard tools and drive team collaboration during the development and deployment process.

Whether you’re an individual developer or working as part of a large team, Salesforce DX provides an integrated, end-to-end life cycle designed for high-performance agile development. And best of all, we built it to be open and flexible so that you can build together with the tools and practices you know and love.

Start a Process When a Platform Event Occurs

You already know the power of automating a business process based on record changes in your Salesforce org. But what if some of your business-critical events don’t happen inside your Salesforce database? No problem. Create a process that starts when a platform event occurs. This feature is new in both Lightning Experience and Salesforce Classic.

At its most basic level, a process is similar to an if/then statement. Until now, the “if” has been some version of “if a record is created or edited and it has these values.” With platform events, you have full control over the “if.” You aren’t restricted to triggering a process when records are created or updated. As long as Salesforce can receive a REST call about the event, you can start the process.

  1. Create a process that starts when A platform event occurs.
  2. For the trigger, select a platform event and match the event to a record in your org.
  3. Configure the rest of the process.


Using platform events and the Salesforce REST API, your printer publishes a Printer Status event at the end of each work day. This event notification includes the printer’s serial number, how much ink and paper it has, and how many pages it has printed in total.

When Salesforce receives the Printer Status event, your Printer Management process uses the serial number to find a matching asset in your Salesforce org. If the process finds a match, it evaluates the event’s data.

  1. Always update the asset’s print count.
  2. If ink is low, launch a flow that orders more ink and assigns a service technician to install the ink cartridge.
  3. If paper is low, launch a flow that orders more paper and assigns a service technician to add the paper.

Event process that evaluates whether a printer needs more supplies

Retain More Debug Logs for Longer(This is for #LEX + #Classic)

We changed the way that we delete old debug logs. We now retain debug logs for 7 days. You can generate a total of 250 MB of debug logs in a 15-minute window. When your org is upgraded to Winter ’18, all logs that are at least 7 days old are deleted. This change applies to both Lightning Experience and Salesforce Classic.

Previously, you could generate up to 50 MB of debug logs. We kept them indefinitely, deleting the oldest log each time that you exceeded the limit. We removed the 50 MB limit and changed to a 7-day storage limit.

If you generate more than 250 MB of debug logs in a 15-minute window, your trace flags are disabled. We send an email to the users who last modified the trace flags, informing them that they can re-enable the trace flag in 15 minutes.

The per-log size limit of 2 MB hasn’t changed. Debug logs that are larger than 2 MB are reduced in size by removing older log lines, such as log lines for earlier System.debug statements. The log lines can be removed from any location, not just the start of the debug log.


Note: This release is in preview. Features described here don’t become generally available until the latest general availability date that Salesforce announces for this release. Before then, and where features are noted as beta, pilot, or developer preview, we can’t guarantee general availability within any particular time frame or at all. Make your purchase decisions only on the basis of generally available products and features.

You can access the complete Release notes here: WINTER’18 Release Docs

If you want to try the new features all by yourself then you can sign up for the Winter 18 Pre-release Org here Signup Form for Pre-Release Org  and post your findings aka “Treasures” in the Release Readiness & Feature Adoption Success Group and use the tag #Winter18Treasure to join the treasure hunt!

Also, you can download a PDF version too: PDF version of WINTER’18 release

Collaboration on Chatter: Release and Readiness & Feature Adoption

Did you go through all the features of #LEX? What are your favourite ones? I would love to hear your thoughts on latest Release Features. Please leave a comment below.




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