SAP Sapphire: SAP to start offering Fiori apps for free

By Sooraj Shah
03 Jun 2014 View Comments
SAP 2014 showroom floor

SAP CEO Bill McDermott has emphasised that his company is looking to tackle customers' issues with complexity, acknowledging that the German firm doesn't have the best reputation for user experience.

In his keynote at SAP Sapphire in Orlando today, McDermott, who is now the sole CEO after his former co-CEO Jim Hagemann Snabe stepped down to take a supervisory board seat, said that over time he has heard people say that "SAP hasn't exactly been known for user experience". But he suggested that the firm's strategy was focused on changing this.

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He stated that the most intractable CEO challenge for businesses is currently "complexity", and said that the firm wanted to help end users to solve this. 

McDermott urged companies to decrease its "layers", citing that such bureaucracy had led to "90 per cent of businesses failing".

He said people were willing to pay a premium for simplicity when it comes to technology.

Despite this, he announced that SAP's suite of Fiori apps would now be included in its core enterprise software licence and will no longer require an additional $150 per user flat fee.

"Some customers from our user groups believe we shouldn't charge for SAP Fiori. We listened to our customers, I agree with them and now SAP Fiori is included with SAP software," he said.

In addition, and in line with the company's new focus on simplicity, SAP also released Simple Finance, a set of solutions based in SAP's cloud that run on HANA and are tailored specifically for finance departments.

It also plans to work with customers, partners and third-party developers to develop prescriptive, industry-based cloud offerings.

As part of the keynote, McDermott urged companies to move to the cloud, stating that 80 per cent of companies who do, end up saving money. He said that 2014 is the first year where more workloads will be in the cloud than on-premise, but he added that SAP strives to support its end users "whether they are in on-premise or in the cloud".

He said that the opportunity for enterprises is enormous, as currently only one per cent of data is analysed, and only seven per cent of data is tagged.

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