On June 13, SAP’s Patrick Sims joined Allan Pym of APOS Systems to discuss current and future innovations in SAP BI, as well as SAP’s Analytics strategy.
Quoting Mark Twain (“The reports of my death are greatly exaggerated”), Patrick assured the audience that SAP is not backing away from its commitment to solutions such as SAP BusinessObjects, Lumira and Analysis Office, and that “SAP is committed to continue to invest in the on-premise BI suite.” SAP’s Analytics strategy puts Cloud first, but will remain Hybrid-friendly.
The status of the SAP Convergence strategy remains unchanged. Crystal and Web Intelligence remain the stalwarts for reporting, while Analytics Cloud is the data discovery and visualization platform.
The development and support timeline makes it clear that the time is right to upgrade to BI 4.2 if you haven’t already, and to get ready for BI 4.3, which will greatly enable Hybrid strategies.
Patrick then moved on to a discussion of what’s new in BI 4.2 SP7. He described the “Fiori-like” BI Launchpad as the future for usability in SAP BI. Other areas with key innovations include the Semantic Layer/IDT, Web Intelligence reports, and Crystal Reports. Patrick provides links to blog posts that provide more in-depth information on innovations in SP7.
Q4 2019 will see the beta release of SAP BusinessObjects BI 4.3, informally known as the Hybrid version, because many of the new features are designed to make combining On-Premise BI with SAP Analytics Cloud easier and more productive.
The key themes for BI 4.3 are better hybrid capabilities with better integration, a better user experience, especially with Web Intelligence, and enterprise readiness.
In BI 4.3, the “Fiori-like” BI Launchpad becomes the only Launchpad shipped with the product. The new Launchpad is at full parity with the old Lauunchpad, and will enable new directions in the future.
Web Intelligence remains the number one analytics tool in the world and the BI 4.3 Web Intelligence user experience makes it even more accessible to end-users for self-service.
In BI 4.3, you will be able to share Web Intelligence intellectual capital through the use of Web Intelligence Data Models, which will allow you to create entirely new Web Intelligence reports. Web Intelligence Data Models will also allow you to use Webis in Hybrid mode as the basis for SAP Analytics Cloud stories.
The Live Universe Connector provides the ability to connect SAP Analytics Cloud to your SAP BusinsessObjects universes in hybrid mode.
As of SAP BI 4.3, you will be able to push security from your on-premise BI system to SAP Analytics Cloud to simplify hybrid user management.
SAP BI 4.3 also improves access to SAP BusinessObjects content from the SAP Analytics Hub.
Because Adobe will no longer support Flash after next year, BI 4.3 will ship without Flash-dependent components, including Dashboards, BI Widgets, and Explorer.