SAP continues to build out the capabilities of its Business Technology Platform, unveiling Thursday a number of additions and enhancements to the portfolio of integrated products that’s evolving into a critical hub for SAP applications and the data they generate.
Additions to the platform components include workflow management enhancements to the SAP Cloud Platform Extension Suite, new live process content packages, and simplified pricing for the Cloud Platform Integration Suite.
“The big idea here is that the Business Technology Platform is really maturing into the platform for integrating and extending data and applications across all of our systems,” said Dan Lahl, SAP vice president of product marketing, in an interview with CRN.
The announcements were made as part of this week’s Sapphire Now Converge, the online event held this week in place of the Sapphire Now conference – usually held in May – that was canceled because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Business Technology Platform incorporates a number of SAP products including the SAP Cloud Platform, SAP Analytics Cloud, SAP HANA database and SAP Intelligent Robotic Automation. The platform provides business APIs for integrating and extending applications, and tools for managing and analyzing data across the SAP application landscape.
SAP Business Technology Platform is considered a key component of SAP’s “Intelligent Enterprise” initiative through which businesses and organizations connect operations and experiences using the platform and the company’s suite of applications. It’s also a major element of the vendor’s offerings for customers’ digital transformation initiatives.
Lahl said the Business Technology Platform is also significant for SAP solution provider and systems integration partners. Partners who develop packaged or custom applications are using the platform to deliver those applications – many available through the SAP App Center – while systems integrators are building practices and consulting engagements around the platform, he said.
“The platform, for us, is really a partner ecosystem play. We absolutely need our partners developing on the platform,” the executive said.
Additions to the Business Technology Platform include SAP HANA 2.0 SPS 05, a new release of SAP HANA that supports hybrid environments and enhanced native storage extensions for simplifying data management. An update to SAP Data Warehouse Cloud adds business content centered on the retail industry.
A new business layer function of SAP Data Warehouse Cloud, planned for release early in the third quarter, will help partners and customers create models that meet their specific business requirements. A new set of integration connectors will provide deeper, built-in data flow to and from data sources. And the company is adding more planning and predictive capabilities to SAP Analytics Cloud and more closely integrating it with SAP Data Warehouse Cloud and the SAP BusinessObjects Business Intelligence 4.3 toolset.
“That’s giving much more power to the business analysts and the business users,” Lahl said.
SAP also announced new, simplified pricing for the SAP Cloud Platform Integration Suite, allowing customers to sign up once to use all capabilities rather than having to license multiple services. SAP is also offering more application integration packs, which Lahl emphasized go beyond connectors to include content, that link various SAP applications.
“The goal is to get customers up and running more quickly by delivering more rich content,” he said.
New workflow enhancements within the SAP Cloud Platform Extension Suite and new live process content packages will help customers adapt and extend business processes to meet changing business requirements.