SAP Gets Ready to Launch A1S Online Apps on September 19
August 27, 2007 Timothy Prickett Morgan
Imagine if you could use ERP software from an industry giant, but you never had to cope with the installation and maintenance of the systems involved in the use of those applications? SAP is sure hoping that medium-sized businesses the world over are looking to move to a different way of consuming software–one that uses the Internet for connectivity and that deploys software as a service. At least that is what all of the chatter is about concerning SAP’s “A1S” SaaS-style offering, which will be launched on September 19 for delivery perhaps in 2008.
The product that SAP will talk about on that day was also developed under the code-name “Project Vienna,” and it represents SAP’s third stab at the midrange market. (By SAP’s definition, mid-market means companies with fewer than 2,500 employees and less than 500 million euros in annual revenues; this is not exactly a midrange customer in my definition, which would mean companies with between maybe $50 million and $250 million in sales and well under 1,000 employees.) According to rumors earlier this year, when A1S was delayed, the offering is a set of preconfigured mySAP software that can also be deployed as a service over the Internet to give customers the option of buying it or renting it. A1S was slated to be offered as a service some time in 2007, and then as a licensed product in 2008 for internal servers at company sites.
Expect a lot of talk about SAP’s Netweaver middleware and how the whole stack of software has been rejiggered with a services oriented architecture, making it possible for companies to deploy the mySAP software without big consulting fees.
We’ll keep you posted, and we will also let you know if the A1S products are going to be supported on the System i platform, which would seem to be its natural home, given the midrange focus. With the popularity of Windows among SAP’s customers–particularly among the small and medium businesses that have chosen its All-In-One or Business One suites–it is almost a foregone conclusion that it will debut on Windows and maybe Linux.