SAP to offer tools through Sybase's mobile platform

Sybase will remain independently run, but the companies will work together to enhance their product portfolios by offering wide-ranging access to business tools for a variety of mobile devices
Written by Ben Woods, Contributor on

SAP has outlined plans to offer access to its whole product portfolio from the Sybase mobile platform, with compatibility extending to all major mobile operating systems.

Speaking at a joint press conference in Boston and Frankfurt on Thursday, which was held to announce the completion of SAP's $5.8bn (£3.7bn) buyout of Sybase, executives from the companies said the deal will result in two separately-run companies. They added that Sybase's existing portfolio of products will be maintained.

The companies aim to, within nine months, develop a platform that can utilise the entire SAP Business Suite application portfolio on the Sybase Unwired platform. They also plan to release an enterprise information management software development kit (SDK) that will allow third-party developers to extend functionality and create new mobile applications on the resulting platform.

"The nine-month goal for the SDK and SAP mobile aware platform is a good idea. It seems doable (many of the pieces are in place), and it will enable SAP to showcase a more agile organisation if it succeeds," Thomas Otter, a Gartner research director, said in a statement. "It will give the SAP field something to be excited about for Q1 2011."

While most of the presentation focused on mobile developments, the companies also pledged to incorporate SAP's in-memory computing technology across SAP and Sybase's data management products. They said this will allow customers instantaneous access to any type of data, anywhere, in real-time.

"Both SAP and Sybase have some promising developments in in-memory and related technologies, and the road map on how these will come together or not remains less clear," Otter said. "Clearly SAP doesn't want to disrupt current offerings until it has a better grasp of how it will exploit Sybase IP in the SAP stack and vice versa. [Business intelligence] is an area with significant opportunity, but also for disruption. If we are at a 'once in a generation inflection point' then some of the current stack faces obsolescence."

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