The premise of this blog is that Hana Cloud Platform (HCP) is going to be related to Suite on HANA in HANA Cloud the same way as ABAP Workbench was related to SAP on premise ERP Suite. One of the reasons for SAP ERP becoming the leading application for large enterprises 20 years ago was that it provided a comprehensive ready to customize and use application for all areas of the business. In addition it came with a really mature development environment to further extend the SAP supplied functionality for the customer specific requirements. Even though it was a robust development environment, it was not used by customers to build stand alone applications that had nothing to do with SAP ERP application.
Fast forward to the present and the reality of full SAP ERP functionality in the cloud is becoming more real everyday. One way to extend the cloud functionality will be to extend in the HANA Cloud Platform. Imagine the increased security and stability of multi-tenant SAP ERP in the cloud with no customer specific development (Z-Code for some), combined with the flexibility for each customer to extend their business process by developing extensions in their personal space on HCP. It is like having your cake and eat it too. I think SAP’s strategy is brilliant. Hopefully the execution can be equally smooth.
Checkout http://marketrealist.com/2014/08/why-saps-cloud-strategy-will-capture-cloud-space/ for a very high level overview of why SAP’s cloud strategy will deliver results for customers and investors.