January 10, 2013 - In a global press announcement, SAP today announced the availability of SAP Business Suite powered by HANA, the company’s in-memory platform. The announcement forwards SAP’s product realignment plan to make the popular HANA database an analytic centerpiece of all the company’s software.

In this case, SAP’s existing Business Suite adds the performance advantages of highly available in-memory processing so operational data can be represented and analyzed in real time. SAP says that will let customers respond to transactions and events as they occur and translate real-time insights to action without redundant data and systems.

“We can now eliminate the traditional trade-offs between cost and performance and reinvent real-time business while dramatically simplifying our customers’ landscapes, together with a strong open ecosystem of partners,” said Dr. Vishal Sikka, member of the SAP Executive Board, Technology and Innovation, in a press release. “This is a technology release where only the database layer has changed,” said SAP Co-founder Hasso Plattner, speaking live from Palo Alto. The technology is compatible with earlier releases, Plattner said, adding that  SAP will not abandon customers on other databases.

Touting speed and innovation, SAP executives said the release will potentially change business and redefine business markets. With it, mission-critical business processes such as planning, execution, reporting and analysis can all share the same relevant live data.

Plattner predicted big savings for customers; much better analytics, including speed increases of 10-1000x; no more batch programs.

The emphasis on speed and real time are especially important because of the uptake of mobile users and the need to keep the response time for applications to less than three seconds.

Tracing the history of HANA, Sikka explained that at its launch in 2010, HANA had a “fundamentally transformational” effect on analytics. Last year, SAP made advances beyond that to bring transactional applications on HANA and took steps to make HANA a platform. Yet at this point most of the industry was still talking about HANA as an analytical database, even though HANA was designed as a tool database for OLTP and OLAP for structured and unstructured data. Sikka said that today the vision has been brought to life, and “It is a matter of incredible pride for us to say that today HANA becomes one of the databases that supports the SAP Business Suite.”

A rapid-deployment solution, planned to be released in the first quarter of 2013, will be designed for customers to go live in less than six months and will offer a complete package of preconfigured software, implementation services, content and end user enablement for a fixed price and scope, according to the release.

In a related announcement, SAP partner HP announced the launch of a new center of excellence for in-memory computing centered on HANA that enables enterprises to leverage real-time transactional data to improve business processes and mitigate risks.

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