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One of the biggest SAPPHIRE events came to an end last week and there were plenty of announcements made. Many of these announcements were related to SAP Cloud Platform and I was thrilled to hear the direction in which the platform is heading towards. SAP Cloud Platform was mentioned in all the keynotes and in particular I liked the below quotes

There’s a reason why the Cloud Platform is in the center. Everything we do now, how we connect applications, how we present applications, how we present services, will go through the SAP Cloud Platform. The objective is not only that we connect everything with everything else, but also that we can deliver enhancements to products without touching the products. We have to reduce the maintenance effort” – Hasso Plattner

SAP Cloud Platform is the enterprise platform for innovation with over 1B hits a day as the extension of your SAP system” – Bill McDermott

Though I couldn’t be in Orlando,  I was receiving instant updates on various announcements through #sapcp twitter handle. Kudos to the #sapcp team for their great work. In this blog, I will quickly summarize all the #sapcp announcements which I have made a note of and point to the detailed blogs posted by relevant SAP teams.

 

Multi-Cloud availability

SAP Cloud Platform is now generally available in Azure (Europe) and GCP (US). Its been available in AWS since last year and its great to see the addition of GCP and Azure.

You can now try out SAP Cloud Platform in Azure and GCP too

An interesting announcement was around the availability of SAP Cloud Platform Private Edition (planned for Q3). The initial partnership is with IBM which would allow customers to have their own dedicated platform instance with isolated data/network environments. Here is a FAQ document which explains the available set of services and the model which SAP plans to use to deliver the Private Edition.

More info on the co-innovation activities with GCP/Azure can be found in this blog.

Master Data as a Service

Master Data as a service is being planned to be made available in SAP Cloud Platform.  This would be a great news for customers who already have cloud solutions and have to deal with replicating master data like employee, customer, business partners between solutions. SAP Cloud Platform is aimed to support master data harmonization across Cloud and on-premise applications. Based on the below image, I believe SAP Cloud Platform will provide shared master data to all Cloud solutions via APIs. With GDPR coming into effect, this also brings the need to have micro-services on SAP Cloud Platform to deal with consent of storing personal data.

Consumption based pricing

Beginning of 2018, Consumption based pricing (offered under the new  Cloud Platform Enterprise Agreement – CPEA) was made available in few countries. At SAPPHIRE, the coverage has significantly increased and is now available in over 35 countries. You can find the complete list in this blog.

Its also important to note that currently only 30 services (shown below) are available under CPEA. Its expected to reach parity with subscription model very soon.

If you are an existing SAP Cloud Platform customer based on the subscription model and looking to move to consumption model, this blog might be of help.

 

Fiori Cloud

Fiori Cloud now provides a complete UX coverage for S4HANA 1709 system. This means as a customer you can turn on the pre-delivered Fiori apps on SAP Cloud Platform and connect them to their backend S4HANA system. The UX layer is provided by SAP Cloud Platform and the customer maintains and manages their S4HANA system within  their premise.

More information on this announcement can be found in this blog.

As of today, there are 8785 apps supported for S4HANA 1709.

Cloud Portal

If you are planning to migrate from SAP Enterprise Portal to Cloud Portal,  there is good news for you. Several tools have been released to help you in this journey.

  • Content Migration Tool
  • EP as Content Provider
  • KM Migration Tool

More information can be found in this blog.

Another interesting announcement related to this topic is the offering of a tighter integration with Successfactor contents on a central Fiori Launchpad on SAP Cloud Platform. This is currently available to customers as part of a controlled availability program. More information can be found in  the SAP Cloud Platform Portal Overview document.

Cloud Platform SDK for Android

There are lot of announcements to keep android developers happy this year. SAP Cloud Platform has a new SDK for android with the new Fiori design. This was one of the most awaited announcements as the old SDK really needed a refresh. There are wizards (similar to the iOS SDK Assistant) which can help in connecting to an SAP backend system and generate an Android mobile app quickly. This SDK is included in SAP Cloud Platform Mobile service subscription and existing mobile service customers will get access to the new SDK.

More information on the Android SDK announcement can be found in this blog and Britt Womelsdorf  walks through the steps required to use the wizard to generate a simple Android app.

The SAP Cloud Platform SDK for Android will be available for early adopters starting in late June. If you would like to get access to it and participate in the early adopter care program, register here

Few months back, SAP had also released SAP Cloud Platform Mobile Cards for Android. Mobile Cards are micro-apps which an excellent way to quickly deliver simple functional mobile apps to their users without having to write any code.

Integration

SAP have partnered with Cloud Elements to accelerate 3rd party integration with the support of over 150 connectors to non-SAP systems in Cloud and on-premise. These connectors can be easily consumed in  SAP Cloud Platform integration or API Management tools in the Cloud Platform.

More information on this announcement can be found in this blog.

Machine Learning

Early this year, SAP acquired an end-to-end enterprise chatbot platform – Recast.AI. This has been branded as SAP Conversational AI and become generally available. You can sign up and try it out for free.

There are some new pre-trained and customizable services offered under SAP Machine Learning Foundation. They should be soon made available in SAP API Business Hub. API Business Hub is the central place to access all the APIs for SAP solutions as well as selected partner APIs. You can try it out for free.

  • Customizable image object detection: Localizes and tags objects of interest in an image
  • Customizable image feature extraction: Creates a tailor-made image feature extraction service to recognize specific or fine-grained patterns in images
  • Human and face detection: Detects humans and faces in pictures and allows to find matching faces, e.g., for identification or black list check
  • Scene text recognition: Extracts text contents from any type of images, covering not only document-like images but various sceneries.

More information on this announcement can be found here.

Blockchain

SAP also announced the general availability of blockchain service on SAP Cloud Platform. Customers can now build their blockchain projects either using Hyperledger or Multichain technology.

More information on this announcement can be found here.

HANA as a Service

A new HANA as a Service is now available in AWS and GCP Cloud Foundry environment.  It provides capabilities to spin your own  HANA instance using self-service tools, change the size of your HANA instance based on your needs, Consumption-based pricing and accessing the DB from variety of languages and interfaces. More information can be found in this blog.

You can find the Feature Service Description for HANA service in this SAP Help documentation.

There is a series of fresh HANA Academy videos on youtube which explains the capabilities of the new HANA service right from provisioning a HANA instance to deploying a nodejs application.

SAP WebIDE for Application Development

There are plenty of announcements related to the use of SAP WebIDE – right from switching to new WebIDE Fullstack service, cloud based CI/CD , new application programming model in Cloud Platform. Everything has been well documented by the SAP WebIDE team in this blog

If you have not yet tried out SAP WebIDE FullStack service, its time to try it out.

 

Customer Adoption Journey

There has been lot of work done in the last few months to ensure customers are able to successfully adopt SAP Cloud Platform and maximize the value of their current investments and get concierge service from discovery,  piloting, implementation and all the way to a Go-live of solutions that are deployed on SAP Cloud Platform. The below video describes the different phases in the journey.

Read more about Customer Adoption Journey in this blog. Run a free pilot mission to check the use case desirability, feasibility and viability.

New Scenario based content offering

If you are looking for comprehensive examples that showcase how to realize own business solutions on SAP Cloud Platform, do checkout the new section on SAP Cloud platform website

For example, if you are looking to mobilize a business process, you can explore the different use cases related to this and you will have a central view of all the artefacts – Blueprints, Academy videos, Learning journey, Bill of Material outlining the various SAP Cloud Platform services required for the use case, cost estimator etc.

For a customer who is looking at SAP Cloud Platform for the first time, they can easily get lost when going through the list of services and trying to identify the bill of materials relevant for their use case. This is a good starting point for them to validate their use cases and have an understanding of the required services, architecture, cost etc.

I just love the work this team has been carrying out to get all the information streamlined in one place. As of today, you may not find all the asset for all the use cases, but this is just the beginning and I am sure over the next few months this website will be loaded with all the contents.

This blog introduces the new scenario use case pages.

 

This is indeed a long list of new capabilities of SAP Cloud Platform. We usually get to hear most of these at TechED events, but this shows how quickly SAP Cloud Platform is evolving and new capabilities are being added.

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5 Comments

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  1. Phil Cooley

    Nice one Murali Shanmugham I am compiling a blog similar to this as well so you beat me to it :-). Well done!

    Really great summary of the main announcements with specific tailoring to SAP Cloud Platform. I loved what Hasso Plattner stated as I have been providing similar advice to customers in terms of not changing the product but using SAP Cloud Platform as the innovation platform. De-coupled innovation is the key.

    I am really interested in the Cloud Elements partnership as well to improve integration to 3rd parties and will read up on this some more.

    Thanks for the detail on all of the other announcements, will digest them over the coming weeks!

    Thanks Murali!

     

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    1. Murali Shanmugham Post author

      Thanks for your feedback Phil. Please do post the blog which you are compiling. Its always valuable to hear from people who have been working a lot in this space.

       

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  2. Nabheet Madan

    Thanks Murali for the great blog.  This approach of SAP to embrace different technology and giving them one platform to serve your needs does not matter whether SAP or non SAP based is awesome.  Too much material to digest on😀.

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