SAP introduces newest business ‘suite’ to Korea

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SAP introduces newest business ‘suite’ to Korea

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Adaire Fox-Martin, president of SAP Asia Pacific Japan. Provided by the company

Europe’s largest software maker, SAP, demonstrated its latest business software in Korea, which has drawn both acclaim and skepticisms since its launch last month.

SAP launched its next generation Business Suite 4 SAP HANA, or S/4HANA for short, in a bid to help companies process their data both promptly and efficiently. Business Suite is a bundle of applications that help companies with integration and management of data.

It was the biggest product launch since the German company introduced predecessor R/3 23 years ago.

The reception of S/4HANA will be a key indicator of whether SAP has adapted to the new digital and data-sourcing environment amid competition with rivals Oracle and IBM.

Attended by Adaire Fox-Martin, president of SAP Asia Pacific Japan, and Hyoung Won-joon, CEO of SAP Korea, the promotion event was held at COEX Intercontinental Seoul.

Fox-Martin emphasized the simplicity and speed of the suite’s data processing.

“It [S/4HANA] basically cuts the time it takes to compile business accounts and forecasts to minutes, not hours and days, by analyzing vast amounts of data in local memory,” she said.

The new software’s data footprint is 10 times smaller on disk compared to comparable products from other companies with far quicker data processing.

But the software also has a controversial point: S/4HANA only runs on the company’s database platform, which is called HANA.

Critics said that could limit customer’s choices, though the company said customers who choose databases from other companies will be supported through 2025.

SAP also said that S/4 HANA had an enhanced end-user interface called SAP Fiori. Some users have criticized the user interface of SAP’s software for not being simple and intuitive.

“Fiori will provide a very simple, user friendly interface,” said Hyoung, the CEO of the Korean unit.

The latest software can run in the cloud or on company premises. Different versions of S4/HANA will be launched over the next several years.

SAP recently received attention as local tech giants move to cooperate with business-to-business (B2B) software companies like SAP. Samsung Electronics recently announced that it will develop its mobile B2B service jointly with SAP and has already released the B2B tablet PC Galaxy Tab Active, which will later come with SAP’s asset management app.

BY PARK EUN-JEE [park.eunjee@joongang.co.kr]


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