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SAP

SAP gets into the realtime business apps game

SAP

Tom Foremski: In Silicon Valley
Tom Foremski is a former Financial Times journalist and the Founder and Publisher of Silicon Valley Watcher, which is an online news site reporting on... More

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SAP, the world’s largest business software company, launched a suite of enterprise business applications running on its real-time platform HANA, that it says provides massive increases in performance and advanced analytics capabilities.

The company provides most of the world’s largest business groups with enterprise IT applications used to run their core business operations.

SAP co-founder and chairman Hasso Plattner announced the business software suite at SAP’s Silicon Valley Research campus, as part of a global launch in New York, and Frankfurt, Germany.

He said that the increase in business app performance is so great that SAP had been accused of “hype” by sceptics. Some applications can run several hundred percent or faster on the HANA platform, largely because the underlying database technology is loaded into massive solid state drives.

“This will change how our customers do business and they are very excited,” he said. “We are even winning over startups, they are saying that they never thought they would be working with SAP.”

The German software giant has been investing in rebuilding its core business applications and has been making large acquisitions over the past five years to better support mobile IT applications, and support crucial data center trends such as the increased use of massive solid state drives.

Key features of the announcement are powerful business analytics capabilities that can produce reports in a matter of seconds compared several hours or more. The analytics can help companies predict demand, output, and profits while communicating with suppliers and customers.

Mr Plattner said that the real-time suite of business applications shares the same code-base as that used by current customers so there won’t be any compatibility problems. The key is the HANA real-time database technology.

However, it will take time for customers to figure out how best to use real-time data and then integrate it into its business processes, says Ray Wang, principal at business consulting group Constellation Research. “They will have to clearly state the advantages for companies in different industries.”

SAP is recruiting early adopters, such as the 150 year old Deere & Company, as part of a long-term strategy in educating customers about the competitive advantages of its real-time platform.

Analytics is an important competitive battleground and one where Tibco Software (an SVW sponsor) and others such as Oracle, and IBM, are fighting for customers. Real-time data is important but figuring out what’s next, the predictive analytics, is where organizations can reap competitive advantages.

Analytics also has the potential to replace many routine mid-level management decisions and distill the decisions that need the expertise of company executives.

SAP did not announce pricing but sources close to company say that the pricing will be aggressive and it will be “priced to go,” especially for early adopters.

This article by Tom Foremski originally appeared on Silicon Valley Watcher, a Burn Media publishing partner.

Image: SAP