Skip to Content

With great interest we at btexx have followed the SAP Announcement of the new product “SAP Mobile Documents” at the Mobile World Congress 2013 in Barcelona.

BARCELONA — To meet heavy demand for simple, highly secure file synchronization and sharing in the enterprise, SAP today announced the SAP Mobile Documents solution. The new mobile content management solution aims to help increase user productivity by providing a single entry point to personal business documents and corporate content via any mobile device…. Read more here.

We got especially interested as we found out that the on-premise version of SAP Mobile Documents is based on our beloved SAP NetWeaver Portal & Knowledge Management

The last couple of years we at btexx got really tired by all the false assertions & rumors that the SAP KM is dead. Because we are sure and proved it in many customer situations/projects that the SAP KM is a great and powerful platform to build scalable and user friendly solutions, like the btexx documentManager, which is by the way also available in a free version

In Germany we have the saying “Totgesagte leben länger/There’s life in the old dog yet”. For the KM it seems to be true. From our point of view the new product offering from SAP will strengthen the position of the SAP NW Portal and especially the KM.

Why SAP KM is a great choice for Document Management

  • Enterprise ready architecture, which provides a stable and scalable operation
  • Extensive set of document management features are shipped within the SAP NW Portal Licence
    • Versioning, Subscriptions, Classification/Meta-Data Management etc.
  • Powerful configuration options and a granular/enterprise ready authorization concept
  • Good integration possibilities for 3rd party-content via repository manager framework
  • Availability of social functions like comments & rating years before these features got popular through social networks
  • Lots of feature enhancements with the SAP NW 7.30 Portal stack
  • Open API to extend and tweak the KM to your needs

     Following an example as to how the user interface of the SAP KM can look like:

docMan.PNG

How SAP Mobile Documents can add value

With SAP Mobile Documents existing SAP Portal/KM customers will have a great possibility to leverage and extend their investments in SAP NW KM for their mobile workforce. From our point of view this product seems to be a really good candidate to go mobile. It’s far less complicated than the other SAP Mobile Solutions and provides an immediate added value for customers, e.g. that IT departments have finally an answer to the risks of the usage of free filesharing platforms like dropbox for corporate content.  

 

SAP Mobile Documents On-Premise Architecture

Basis of the on-premise scenario is the SAP NetWeaver Portal based on the Java Runtime Environment and the SAP Knowledge Management (KM) as document storage. Furthermore it’s also possible to integrate other CMIS enabled content providers like SharePoint document libraries into SAP Mobile Documents.

SAP_Mobile_Documents_Architecture.PNG

Source: help.sap.com

As runtime platform the latest portal versions are used

  • SAP NetWeaver 7.3 Support Package Stack 09 or
  • SAP NetWeaver 7.3 including Enhancement Package 1 Support Package Stack 05.

Here you see an example how mobile users can access different corporate documents stores (SAP KM & SharePoint) via the native iPad App:

sap_mobile_documents.PNG

Source: SAP Mobile Documents Overview

I am looking forward to the upcoming Ramp-Up of SAP Mobile Documents to testdrive and extend our btexx SAP NW best practice portal sotric with mobile document management.

Best regards and looking forward to your feedback!

Michael

To report this post you need to login first.

15 Comments

You must be Logged on to comment or reply to a post.

  1. avanish gulatee

    HI Michael,

    As I am Certified SD Consultant and never being in to technical side so can you suggest what are the baiscs or prerequisites for gaining the knowledge of SAP for Mobile because I am willing to learn SAP CRM-MOBILE APPLICATIONS.

    thanks

    (0) 
    1. Michael Beining Post author

      Dear Ennio,

      to gain knowledge about the SAP Mobile Offerings the SCN is a good start. Please have a look at the mobile community. Furthermore I would also recommend to test/download the SAP Demo Applications from the SAP Store.

      The most important prerequisites about SAP Mobile Documents are highlighted in my blog 😉 .

      Further information can be found via help.sap.com.

      Hope that helps!

      Michael

      (0) 
  2. Tobias Hofmann

    KM is feature complete. So you can of course use what is there, but cannot expect new features. That is why SAP is saying that for  ECM you should not use KM. It should also explain why SAP Mobile Documents is implementing CMIS.*

    Several common KM use cases like tagging, categories, etc are not possible ootb with standard KM, this needs to implemented.

    KM is more than enough for managing documents, but for collaboration it’s simply not enough and needs to be enhanced by a 3rd party product. And that is something everyone that is planning to make KM the base of a document / collaboration solution should be aware of.

    *if I understand SAP MD architecture right, CMIS is implemented by SAP MD and NOT by KM.

    (0) 
    1. Beata Ciepiel

      Hello Tobias,

      Thank you for additional details. Just to clarify – I understand that KM is a prerequisite for implementation of SAP Mobile Documents?

      Beata

      (0) 
      1. Michael Beining Post author

        Hi Beata,

        let me clarify your question. In my blog I am talking about the on-premise scenario of SAP Mobile Documents, a cloud based scenario will be also available.

        For the on-premise version of SAP Mobile Documents the SAP NetWeaver Portal 7.3 SP9 or EHP1 SP5 is the prerequisite. The SAP Mobile Documents Server runs on top of it.

        Concerning the document storage the SAP Knowledge Management (KM) is not a prerequisite, but the KM is the first document provider, next to SharePoint libraries, which is supported by SAP Mobile Documents. This means SAP KM customers/users are the first ones who can benefit from the new SAP solution SAP Mobile Documents.

        I hope that answered your question.

        Best regards,

        Michael

        (0) 
    2. Michael Beining Post author

      Hi Tobias,

      I hope you did not misunderstood me/my blog. I am not saying that the SAP KM is the best in class ECM system in the world and that you should use it without checking if it fits for your requirements/use cases, but I am quite sure that the KM is, based on the total costs of ownership and the features it provides, for a lot use cases a very, very attractive solution.

      Nevertheless I agree that the standard delivery of the KM needs some tuning, this can be done via project work or via a packaged SAP Partner Solution.

      Here a short summary of my 3 key messages that I want to share with you:

      • SAP Knowledge Management is far more powerful & better than it’s reputation
      • SAP Mobile Documents looks like a promising enterprise ready solution for mobile document management
      • Existing KM users can benefit from SAP Mobile Documents to mobilize their on-premise KM content

      Two additional comments to your post

      • The SAP KM has a very powerful meta-data and taxonomy model, so the enablement of tagging and categories, etc. is a no-brainer
      • CMIS Support/Implementation: You need a CMIS “Consumer” and an “Provider”
        • SAP Mobile Documents is the CMIS Consumer
        • SAP KM and/or MS SharePoint are the CMIS Providers
          • I am currently not sure if the KM by itself is a CMIS provider (starting from SP9) or if that feature comes through a shipment/delivery of SAP Mobile Documents. But in the end this is just a technical detail… If I find out I will post it here

      Best regards & thanks for the active discussion! 🙂

      Michael

      (0) 
      1. Tobias Hofmann

        Michael,

        I am the last person you have to convince about the benefits of Portal / KM. It’s just that everyone should be aware of the status and the implications that comes with it. SAP MD uses KM as a document storage. Makes total sense, as KM is made for this. I count this under the category: increase ROI for current SAP Portal customers.

        But when a SAP MD customer now starts to evaluate KM and wants to use it for more – as the documents are already stored there – this is a task that needs to be done really carefully.

        For instance, while KM comes with versioning, rating, meta-data management, it’s definitely a challenge to  make use of them, as you’ll have to code your own UI (standard KM UI is not user friendly) and business logic. That’s what I meant with not available ootb. Stating that this is a no-brainer is misleading, as it comes with work and therefore costs to get a nice tagging & category management* for assets stored in KM.

        Open question about CMIS: does this now mean that there is a CMIS module for KM available or is this part of SAP MD? The picture above leaves room for speculations: The link from KM to CMIS connector does not contain the word CMIS …

        * while tagging & cats are nice, nowadays this should be semantics (RDF, OWL, etc) and then of course not only applied to KM assets.

        (0) 
        1. Michael Beining Post author

          Thanks for your feedback! I think we are more or less on the same page. A selection of the best fitting document management solution is of course not easy and different aspects need to be considered. Every system comes with a set of features and with a price tag (software license, project & operation costs, etc.). Based on that information a customer should choose the best fitting solution for his business case.

          This blog is not intended to give advice on how to select the best fitting document management system, but maybe that’s a good idea for a follow-up blog…

          You are more than welcome to participate in that. I myself have very deep knowledge about SAP Knowledge Management and Microsoft SharePoint and it really depends on the customer case and the requirements where I would recommend the one or the other…

          If one is mean, one can say that neither of the above mentioned solutions are “real” Enterprise Content Management Systems… But both systems have their justification, as well as solutions from OpenText, Alfresco, …

          Cheers & happy Easter!

          Michael

          (0) 
        2. Karsten Geiseler

          Hi.

          The CMIS connector for KM is – at least for version 1.0 – part of SAP Mobile Documents.The application has to be deployed on every KM Server that should be connected to Mobile Documents. For the scenario called “My Documents” that is about synchronizing own, private content to multiple devices, using KM really makes sense. It’s a 5 minute configuration and the fastest CM that we connected so far (in the recommended configuration).

          For “Corporate Content” which is about integrating various repositories and display them on the same device, the goal is to be able to connect any Content Management system offering a CMIS compliant interface. So far we tested KM, Sharepoint 2010, 2013 and Alfresco.

          The clear advantage of KM is that its repository framework is a mature solid umbrella to integrate repositories and content stores. I am not a fan of KM UIs, but Mobile Documents and CMIS provide an easy and standard way to integrate functionality or develop fancy desktop, web or mobile UIs in a quick manner. It’s obiously a big opportunity for customers and partners.

          Cheers, Karsten

          (0) 
    1. Michael Beining Post author

      Hi Syam,

      thanks!

      Concerning your question, I think the official pricing information are not yet available. I would recommend to contact your SAP Sales contact.

      Best regards,

      Michael

      (0) 

Leave a Reply