SAP’s latest BusinessObjects business intelligence solutions suite, version 4.1, has just been released. With this release, SAP is seeking to address the needs of the three very different users that BusinessObjects caters to - the decision maker, the business analyst, and IT developers building applications – with one product line. In addition, with this release, SAP has put a strong focus on something customers were demanding – stability, Jason Rose, vice president of product marketing at SAP, said in an interview.
SAP’s “ramp up” process is different than a beta process in which customers are told not to deploy in production. “Ramp up is actually KPI driven,” says Rose. Ramp up KPIs require that you have 10 customers in production who have deployed the software to their end users in order for SAP to call it generally available.
For this release, says Rose, SAP ended up with 16 live customers – including 3M which deployed it out to 25,000 customers - which was far ahead of its ramp up KPI, and this was done in half the time expected – just three to three and a half months. “The speed we were able to get through ramp up really spoke to the satisfaction that our customers had with the release.”
Key enhancements in 4.1 fall into three main areas - more big data sources, enhancements for mobile apps, and further integration to SAP HANA, said Rose.
With this release, support is available for more than 140 data sources, including more OLAP sources than ever before. Big data-ready, the release includes support for Amazon Elastic MapReduce and Hadoop Hive.
Support for over 140 data sources means that the platform is well suited to customers who are heavily invested in core SAP products, but also helps companies using other products from Oracle, Teradata, and Microsoft, he notes. SAP is also taking BusinessObject’s dashboarding and the BI platform and integrating it with the Events Stream processing solution from Sybase so users can take machine data and “almost turn their dashboard into a stock ticker” that is automatically updating every time they get a new piece of information.”
Providing one standard for enterprise BI, the latest version of BusinessObjects, SAP says Business Objects 4.1 delivers a platform designed for any size business with SAP Crystal Server 2013 software and the Edge edition and enterprise edition of the 4.1 release of SAP BusinessObjects BI solutions. SAP BusinessObjects BI solutions are available for on-premise or on-demand deployment and support advanced multi-tenant management. The solutions give IT, business analysts and business users the ability to convert analysis on multiple devices as well as go from online to offline mode.
In addition, with new software development kits (SDKs) and application programming interfaces (APIs) customers can personalize their applications with logo and color details. Faster and more accurate decisions are consumable from mobile devices through a single mobile application.
SAP also recently announced a free personal edition of agile data discovery software, SAP Lumira. Now generally available, the personal edition of SAP Lumira helps users analyze Microsoft Excel data by building interactive visualizations in a drag and drop environment in order to accelerate the decision-making process and uncover hidden business opportunities.
An enhancement specifically for HANA customers is that SAP BusinessObjects can now can generate universes against the HANA views buiness And for SAP HANA customers, said Rose, we can automatically generate universes against HANA data. “Now, if you are a HANA customer and you have the BI suite we actually will automatically generate that universe layer,” says Rose. This enables uses to immediately start creating BI and analytics on top of HANA without having to manually create that connection between BI and the underlying HANA database.
SAP has an updated website for BusinessObjects BI solutions at www.sapbusinessobjectsbi.com.