First of all, I need to admit that it took a while to make the former beta version of SAP Cloud Platform Functions generally available. Due to the revised strategy of SAP Cloud Platform becoming the Business Technology Platform, we reshaped and optimized the former Functions beta service accordingly. Its rebranded name reflects the new priorities and focus of this service. In the context of the Extension Factory, the current and future focus of the serverless runtime now prioritizes the ease at which you can develop extensions with the convencience of fully-managed technology. In other words, less focus on general purpose functionality, and more focus on extensions to enable seamless integration with SAP business systems and processes.
Furthermore, this new service provides carefree entry for customizing and building functional extensions of business systems. This fully-managed serverless runtime provides our customers with the following advantages:
- Lower costs, because customers pay for resource consumption, not idle times
- Fully managed scaling and managment – SAP is responsible for scaling and managing the service based on the customer’s needs
- Decreased development complexity – thanks to the focus of serverless runtime on extensions, developers don’t need to think about infrastructure-related topics such as connectivity or server bootstrapping and can focus instead on the required business logic for their extension.
The goal of SAP Cloud Platform Extension Factory, serverless runtime is to become the lightweight option for extending business systems similar to the extension spots in on-premise ABAP systems. Extensions are integrated with the standard business processes and systems, but are decoupled from the digital core. They allow customers to keep the core clean of custom code.
Importantly, customers are not locked in to the serverless runtime and can switch seamlessly to the upcoming managed Kyma runtime. Being based on the same aligned technology standards and concepts – a transition is possible without any changes having to be made to the application code. With that, a customer can switch to a more flexible approach and added freedom with the Kyma runtime, which also exposes the underlying Knative/Istio/Kubernetes layer. This however brings more responsibility in terms of costs and operations, as it adds dedicated infrastructure resources. The availability of the serverless runtime and the Kyma runtime bring maximum flexibility to our customers who can choose the approach that best suits their needs at a given time without risk of being locked in to either runtime for the duration.
For more information, see https://www.sap.com/SAP Cloud Platform Extension Factory, serverless runtime.