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SAP for Utilities Cloud EV Readiness Package: A new design pattern for SAP’s Cloud offerings?

Last night, I saw a YouTube  video about a new Cloud offering called “SAP for Utilities Cloud EV Readiness Package”.

Here is a quick description of this offering:

The SAP for Utilities Cloud EV Readiness Package provides electric power utility companies an affordable, modular, scalable IT solution to manage electric vehicle infrastructure. It is scheduled for general availability from SAP in Q1 2013, and is now available for test and evaluation pilot projects.

Moya Watson blogged about it and added some additional details.

I found this video and Moya’s blog interesting for various reasons:

  • Industry-specific cloud: This is the first time I’ve seen SAP offer a cloud offering for a specific industry – in this case “Utilities”. There are industry solutions for ByDesign (for example, manufacturing provided by a partner) but this is the first time I’ve seen solution where the industry-focus is so dominant and where the main purpose of the industry-focus is not to complement another a more generic cloud solution. 
  • Industry-specific, problem-specific offering. This solution does more than focus on utilities – it focuses on a specific problem for that industry –  the administration of electric vehicles.  This sort of design pattern has great potential if customer problems can be found that are appropriate for this sort of cloud solution.  By not trying to solve all problems but focus on a particular problem, SAP can more quickly design solutions and bring them to market.  The difficulty is in discovering such problems and having the reusable architectural building blocks (integrating billing from OnPremise assets, for example) that allow such solutions to easily be created. Ideal would be many of these smaller clouds rather than a huge offering that takes much longer to be available. 
  • The focus on the end-user. This offering also includes services for the customers of utilities (drivers of EVs rather than the utilities themselves.
  • Use of mobile apps: There are a variety of consumer-focused mobile apps planned.
  • No mention of technology in the video or blog. The “Cloud” isn’t in the foreground.  HANA is never mentioned although it is obvious that it will probably be used to power the needed analysis. The business case is the most important thing here.
  • “Readiness Package” – this is a new term that I’ve not seen before. I don’t know whether this similar to a RDS offering or whether it is associated with Electric Vehicle usage

Note: I have no idea which SAP cloud will being used for this solution. There are various possibilitites:

  1. Hana AppCloud – Probably not, since apps based on this environment have a smaller scope (RecallsPlus or the new EPM OnDemand apps)
  2. NetWeaver Cloud : Possible but the required functionality (HANA, mobile framework, etc)  – although planned – is not yet available
  3. Another type of SAP-hosted Cloud: Could be a possibility but unlikely
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    • Pankaj,

      Great blogs and very interesting content.

      I’d suggest moving the blogs over to the SAP Cloud area – you’d get the attention that the subject material deserves.

      Will Convergent Charging be providing a generic service on NW Cloud? One that various solutions such EV readiness can use?


  • Thanks Dick for setting a great standard with this analysis.  I love most that you picked out the focus on the end-user — we did some significant dot-connecting with what the final end-user needs to get over hurdles or perceived hurdles of adoption electric vehicles, and we connected internally with various groups across the company in pretty interesting ways to tackle this stuff.  SAP is so uniquely positioned in many ways to help be an aggregator from many sides.

    You can read between the lines and see that there’s a team focusing on cars in the connected world, and EVs are but a subset of that.  You are correct, at least initially, with #2 above — this EV readiness will run on the NetWeaver Cloud. 

    Perhaps we can meet up if you’re at TechEd in Vegas and swap more stories.

    Thanks Pankaj for the additional link on Convergent Charging.  All great stuff that comes together here.

    • Moya,

      I really like the term “aggregator” to describe SAP’s role in this sort of solution. As a metaphor, it is much more powerful than “mash-up”. The solution is also an excellent example of what Gartner calls SAP’s Nexus of Forces.

      As to be expected, I’m overjoyed that the solution is going to run on NW Cloud. It is a perfect home for similar solutions. 

      Besides the use of design thinking, the unique quality of the solution also suggests a new manner of looking at customer problems as well as the use of SAP technology and industry experience.  Was there a special team that worked on it?

      I’m excited to see it appear, am curious to see how it evolves and am optimistic that it will act as a beacon for others.


  • Hello Dick,

    I join Moya and Pankaj in thanking you for your insights here.  I’m working on the EV Readiness Team with Moya, and just wanted to mention that yes, we plan to take advantage of HANA services and mobility services when available on NetWeaver Cloud.  The NWC road map aligns well with our road map for those services. 


  • Hello Dick,

    This is announcement for a solution being built on top of NetWeaver Cloud. It’s not a different cloud.

    Btw, I didn’t get your comment that HANA is not available as option on NetWeaver Cloud.

    There are already SAP solutions built on NetWeaver Cloud and HANA on it – , 

    Partners and customers of NetWeaver cloud are using HANA in their applications (I think some of them will be shown on the demojam around TechEd, others people are blogging about already ––part-1 )

    Best Regards

    Peter Peshev

    • Peter,

      I know that the use of HANA is a critical feature in the NetWeaver Cloud but I didn’t think that this feature was being used  productively – that is why I said “not yet available”.  I know about the NetWeaver Cloud Portal being based on NWCloud but didn’t know that “SAP Precision Retailing” was based on it as well.

      Good to know that this functionality is being used in the DemoJam entries as well.


  • Hi,

    Regarding the question at the end of this great blog: EV is actually a set of applications that are built on top of NWCloud and are aggregated together to sites using Cloud Portal, which provides a web mobile experiance. For some scenarios, such as direct consumption via the car dashboard, EV provides the API to the car manufacturer.

    For some of the EV applications, the usage of HANA indeed makes sense and this is already available, as Peter points.



    • Love the idea that the EV Package is really set of applications rather than a single application. What will be interesting is to see how fast other packages emerge that create their own reusable applications and reuse the existing applications (dare I say “services”) created by other packages.