At last week’s TechEd conference in Las Vegas, SAP put the breaks on the latest version of its software suite, mySAP ERP 2005. An upgraded version won’t be released until 2010. Until then, SAP plans releases of feature enhancements around specific modules.
The move was greeted by TechEd attendees as good news because many said that they didn’t want to undergo an upgrade project with the possibility of another upgrade in only a year or two. “ERP fatigue” is what one analyst called it.
“R” Ray Wang, principal analyst at Forrester Research Inc. told me that SAP is doing all it can to motivate customers to move to the latest and greatest version of SAP. The latest software were laid out like carrots – Duet, enterprise search and the Business Intelligence Accelerator – but Wang said SAP users are quietly saying they want a one or two year break before moving forward with big upgrade projects.
But questions remain about whether SAP is falling behind its schedule to service-enable the entire mySAP Business Suite in 2007. Already about 500 enterprise services have been released to the business process repository. How many enterprise services need to be released before the entire suite can be considered services enabled?
“I think they are definitely on track with the integration pieces,” Wang said. “The business services piece needs more work.
SAP’s new software delivery plan left room for Oracle to ruminate about whether SAP is falling behind. Oracle has been touting its Fusion middleware as the foundation of everything SOA.
“SAP appears to be rethinking their strategy as they lose application market share
to Oracle and confront the difficulties of moving their application software to a modern Service Oriented Architecture (SOA),” said Oracle CEO, Larry Ellison.
SAP struck back:
“Larry Ellison's statements in today's Oracle earnings press release about SAP's product and acquisition strategy are a complete misrepresentation," said Bill Wohl, vice president of product and solutions public relations, SAP. “Since January of 2003, SAP has consistently articulated and delivered on its vision for enterprise SOA following a course of organic growth combined with strategic acquisitions.”
More to come…