SAP Watch

Apr 26 2012   6:37PM GMT

SAP and the art of dashboarding Zen

Jacquelyn Howard Jacquelyn Howard Profile: Jacquelyn Howard

By the end of 2012, SAP plans to deliver Zen, the code name for the new addition to the SAP BusinessObjects Analysis suite that allows users to create HTML5 apps and dashboards. Although Xcelsius (aka SAP BusinessObjects Dashboards), has mobile dashboard functionality, it requires Flash, leaving out iPad users, since the Apple iOS does not support Flash. HTML5 works across a wider variety of mobile devices.

In the recent “Most Important Xcelsius Webinar of 2012,” Mico Yuk of Everything Xcelsius noted that 82% of attendees were not familiar with SAP Zen, so here are some key facts:

  • SAP recommends that current Xcelsius users stick with Xcelsius, but suggests that those using Web Application Designer (WebAD) move to Zen. That said, SAP is not setting an end-of-life date for BEx just yet.
  • SAP plans to eventually merge Xcelsius and Zen, according to the roadmap SAP published last week. This is interesting, considering Xcelsius is geared towards business users who want to create dashboards and Zen appears to be aimed more at developers (SAP uses the term “architecture” for SAP Zen in its Statement of Direction).
  • By the end of 2012, mobile users should be able to access Xcelsius and Zen through an SAP BusinessObjects mobile app

Although SAP discussed SAP Zen (then as SAP BusinessObjects Analysis Edition for Application Design – a decidedly un-Zen-like name) back in October 2011, it recently received some new attention on Twitter. If you are attending SAPPHIRE and want to see Zen in action, you can get a peek at Zen demo pods. I plan to be there to take a peek. Will you?

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