Would you like to enhance your business by one or another SAP Fiori app to benefit from its features, even though your business does not run on SAP S/4HANA yet? – No problem, you are probably ready to start today while still using the SAP Business Suite!
With this blog entry, we would like to make you aware of a How-To Guide: Build Your First Fiori App on SAP NetWeaver, which employs SAP Fiori Elements and Core Data Services to construct a demo app. It is most likely very similar to what you have seen before. What might be special though, is the development environment. We purposely based this example on NetWeaver 7.50, which is the technology stack for SAP ERP 6.0 EHP 8 using IBM Db2 for i as a database. (The same exercise would of course work for any other database system that has been released with NetWeaver 7.50.) Both choices have been made to demonstrate that neither SAP HANA nor SAP S/4HANA are hard requirements to start your journey to the future.
In 2013 (that means with NetWeaver 7.40), SAP started to innovate SAP application and UI design. At that time, the first version of SAP Fiori got released, which did not only affect the UI, but had also a deep impact on ABAP runtime, connectivity, and the way the database was used. Now in 2020, SAP Fiori 3 is available, and the technology evolution is still ongoing. This is one reason why many people believe that SAP Fiori can only be used with SAP S/4HANA or other current SAP products, but that’s not true!
While I would not recommend to start with a product based on NetWeaver 7.40, the release after that, NetWeaver 7.50, is – although not feature-complete – mature enough to build serious SAP Fiori applications. The SAP Fiori App Reference Library shows the existing SAP offerings for SAP Business Suite. SAP also promises that all Fiori applications you build now will continue to run with SAP S/4HANA; at least if you run on premises.
The other reason why SAP Fiori is rarely considered with traditional SAP releases is, that SAP Fiori imposed new challenges on the underlying database system. Although SAP focuses on SAP HANA, all other databases released for SAP Business Suite can handle this new type of workload too. A Best Practice Guide for ABAP Core Data Services addresses this topic in more detail.
If you haven’t understood everything from above, don’t worry. The How-To Guide has been written for newbies to SAP Fiori. It examines the new development process as it works for Business Suite and describes it step-by-step. The goal is to provide you with a good starting point for your journey to the future. Even while still on SAP Business Suite, you can start today.