Let me start this blog by imposing upon you, my view of the solution building blocks from SAP that looks to address the topic of integration and orchestration.

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The above multitude of products provisioned by SAP, looks to tackle the constant evolution of enterprises and it’s needs around comprehensive integration. With increasing digital and cloud adoption, the above stack from SAP attempts to fulfil the modern enterprise’s appetite.

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From traditional Application to Application integration, various Business to Business integration needs, enabling enhanced consumer experience via the Business to Consumer integration along with Cloud to Cloud or Cloud to On-Premise applications, this comprehensive stack claims having the capability to address them.

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(Click to enlarge)

Considering that it’s been almost a year since this earlier blog was written, there hasn’t been any radical changes to the stack in terms of capabilities. But in the last 12 months, one topic that has taken center stage is the Internet of Things (IoT).


What is IoT?


A simple search and wikipedia will have the following to say;


The Internet of Things (IoT) is the network of physical objects or “things” embedded with electronics, software, sensors, and network connectivity, which enables these objects to collect and exchange data.

The Internet of Things allows objects to be sensed and controlled remotely across existing network infrastructure, creating opportunities for more direct integration between the physical world and computer-based systems, and resulting in improved efficiency, accuracy and economic benefit. Each thing is uniquely identifiable through its embedded computing system but is able to interoperate within the existing Internet infrastructure.

Experts estimate that the IoT will consist of almost 50 billion objects by 2020.


To understand the impact of IoT, this representation from Beecham Research provides a brilliant insight;


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Source : M2M Sector Map :: Beecham Research


From a numbers perspective, IoT is projected to be a >1 Trillion USD opportunity by 2020. So this gives an indication of the potential that it has to offer and why we should take it seriously.


Note: If you are interested in this topic further and what SAP is doing in this space, this multi part webinar series, Internet of Things in the Enterprise – Reimagine, Transform, Reinvent ( Eight Episode Webcast Series ) is a effective jump start.


As I was reading more and more on this topic, I started realizing the outrageous demands around the processing speed and volume of data for IoT. Along with this, there is the added complexity of a multitude of protocols that IoT engages with.


SAP and IoT


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(Source – SAP)

The above is the proposed architecture from SAP for IoT. At a high-level it stands out as a sufficiently comprehensive platform for IoT use cases. The HANA big data platform with its in-memory capabilities will cater to the processing of massive data volumes in real time (not to forget the inclusion of historical data for prediction). The HANA Cloud Platform comes with services for managing devices, security, collaboration, mobile and portal etc along with a framework to support application development. The HANA cloud integration will help integrate with on-premise or other cloud applications to enrich the data required for analysis and reporting.

But in all the discussions on this particular topic of IoT, one thing that concerned me was the lack of clarity around how does the actual proposed device integration work. How does SAP really intend to support the machine integration, the varied protocols for IoT, the anticipated volumes and transactional speed of message processing? That was the missing link and in many ways one of the key building block for a successful solution.

And then recently I stumbled upon this press release – SAP Selects Solace Systems to Support High-Performance Messaging in the Cloud for Digital Businesses – Solace Systems

There is very limited information available currently on what this means and how this fits into the IoT solution offering (and the overall Integration and Orchestration solution stack) from SAP. But with the 2015 TechEd fever ready to take over the SAP community soon, I am hoping to hear more around this and IoT in general.

I hope this blog proves to be conversation starter for the SAP community around what is the latest in the integration solutions from SAP and how these solutions intend to support the latest buzz of IoT and the connected world.

Do share your thoughts and post your comments!

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2 Comments

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  1. Amol Joshi

    Hi Shabrish,

    But in all the discussions on this particular topic of IoT, one thing that concerned me was the lack of clarity around how does the actual proposed device integration work. How does SAP really intend to support the machine integration, the varied protocols for IoT, the anticipated volumes and transactional speed of message processing? That was the missing link and in many ways one of the key building block for a successful solution.

    >> You dont have any device specific offering as far as the IoT service is concerned. The IoT service allows you to do a HTTPS Post or a WebSocket based Send action, which is intercepted by the IoT service and data is persisted in the backend HANA DB in the NEO* schema of your account, in the T_IOT* tables.

    Similarly, for the push scenarios, the client code can do a GET and receive the messages that have been queued up on the service end ,for a particular device.

    Currently there is no MQTT support.

    Thanks,

    Amol

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    1. Shabarish Vijayakumar Post author

      Amol – Long time 🙂 And thanks for the comment.

      I am yet to get my hands dirty in the IoT area. Was going thru the conceptual model and the technology involved. The topic of integration was very vague when it came to IoT and SAP. I have already read papers from the likes of Oracle and how they are provisioning (and enhancing) their technology stacks to support this. The SAP model currently seems pretty much Point 2 Point in nature and highly depended on HTTP.

      I think the Solace partnership along with the mention of SAP investing in a High speed messaging bus do seem to start throwing some light. Hopefully will hear more about this and IoT in general, in the coming months.

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