A technology platform, like a political one, is a promise for a better future. A platform unites diverging elements, represents a set of principles and provides the foundation for the work to be done. The reason I am so excited about the launch of SAP Mobile Platform (SMP) 3.0. is that it unites a number of legacy mobile platforms, it’s a fine example of SAP’s stance on open standards and collaboration, and it offers an awesome range of development opportunities for enterprises of all sizes in all industries to build a better future.
SAP’s mobility portfolio has expanded over time through acquisitions and organic innovation: Sybase Mobiliser and Sybase Unwired Platform (SUP are used for developing B2C and B2B/B2E mobile enterprise applications, and Syclo is a solution provider of mobile sales and services built on the Agentry platform. SAP is now merging these three solutions into the SAP Mobile Platform.
The three solutions are based on different development concepts which meant some complexity. By merging them, SAP is unifying these approaches on the basis of open standards, primarily OData (Open Data), for data structures and integration into backend systems. Open standards mean less development effort which means lower costs. Companies will enjoy better interoperability compared with proprietary data models. And it makes no difference whether applications are implemented on HTML or as native apps, because SMP covers all the major market architectures. Companies can more easily implement programs like Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) and Bring Your Own Tools (BYOT) to increase productivity and respond to the dramatic increase in the use of smartphones and tablets in the workplace.
One of the cool things about this platform is that it enables the development of practical tools for daily work. Think about doctors doing rounds in a hospital. Now they can access all charts, x-rays, and patient files on medical apps right at the patient’s bedside so they can spend less time digging through records and more time healing people. One innovative hospital in Austria is providing the app platform independently to doctors to manage both their devices and their patient data, getting rave reviews from patients and staff.
Boston Scientific, a global manufacturer of over 13,000 different types of medical devices, used Sybase Unwired Platform to mobilize their workforce to work smarter. Now their sales reps no longer rely on costly, glossy brochures to explain developments to physicians; they just use videos and animations on tablets to demo medical devices including those that function inside the body. With SMP 3.0 they can do much more!
It’s not only the healthcare industry that benefits from the new platform. Companies in asset intensive industries like utilities, oil and gas, and mining as well as financial services and retail are all scrambling to meet the challenges of mobile consumers and workers everywhere around the globe. Anglian Water, for example, is using SMP to fundamentally change society’s relationship with our most precious resource. SMP is at the core of their IT strategy – from managing assets and enabling a mobile workforce to providing an end to end view of their customers. Phillips 66, an energy manufacturing company, deployed 2000 iPhones equipped with business productivity apps in less than two months using SMP to shape their company’s ‘go-forward vision.’
With one third of the global workforce already mobile, a single, powerful platform like SMP 3.0 is a critical success factor for any company eager to grow their business. It’s the foundation for a sustainable, long term strategy and offers customers a secure, flexible platform to visualize, plan, build, operate and secure mobile apps quickly and easily. Now that’s a strong promise for a better mobile future!
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