Business Objects or HANA? A guide to SAP analytics environments
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The release of the new analytics software coincides with the debut of SAP BusinessObjects 4.0, the latest version of the company’s flagship business intelligence (BI) platform. SAP officially unveiled the new offerings today at a press event in New York.
The new analytics applications are tailored to the needs of organizations in the media, health care, oil and gas, insurance, life sciences and public sector industries. With the new additions, SAP BusinessObjects now boasts a portfolio of 16 industry-specific analytics applications, and the company plans to release more this year.
“SAP's push into the packaged analytic space gives its users an SAP-based solution for rapidly deploying industry specific analytic applications which are particularly well suited to address tactical line of business requirements,” said Rita Sallam, a BI research director with Stamford, Conn.-based Gartner Inc. “Previously, SAP's packaged analytic offerings were limited to the either SAP BW predefined business content, which are not part of SAP's long-term roadmap or to SAP BusinessObjects Rapid Marts, which are domain-specific data marts for supported ERP modules.”
Sallam said the applications should also give SAP new ammo in its fight against Oracle and IBM in the market for preconfigured analytics applications.
“One concern is that it these [newly released applications are] based on the SAP BusinessObjects XI 3.1,” she said. “Since the [BusinessObjects 4.0] release is also being released and at the same time, customers buying into these applications today will be a release behind and should plan for an upgrade once the updated applications are available.”
New analytics software from SAP BusinessObjects
According to SAP, the new analytics applications include:
- IP Rights Analysis, which is designed to help media companies maximize the value they get from intellectual property
- Upstream Operations Performance Analysis, created to help energy firms to manage discovery and development operations
- Staff Productivity Management for Healthcare, designed to improve workforce resource optimization for health care providers
- Enterprise Risk and Solvency Management for Insurance, which helps with compliance issues related to advanced enterprise risk and solvency reporting
- Healthcare Practitioner Spend Analysis and Reporting, which offers risk management and regulatory compliance assistance for life sciences companies
- Planning for Public Sector, which is designed to help public-sector agencies align annual budgets with strategic goals
Pricing for the new software was not disclosed. SAP plans to enhance its targeted analytics software by gradually adding support for its newest technologies, including SAP BusinessObjects 4.0 applications and the SAP High Performance Analytics Appliance software for the Sybase Unwired Platform.
“As a company, we don’t have the bandwidth to build every [conceivable targeted] analytic application,” said Keith Costello, SAP’s executive vice president and general manager of business analytics technologies. “That’s why we’re in the process of developing [a] business analytics developer kit that we’re going to start making available to some pilot partners in the second quarter so they can start to fill in the white space in our roadmaps.”