Ever since SAP announced Hana , I and many others have wondered about what would be the set of killer apps that would come out and wow us. While several apps have come out , and hundreds of others are in the works at SAP and its ecosystem, this question has not quite gone away. Next week is SAPPHIRENOW in Orlando, and I have already been asked a lot by a number of people about what killers apps will be demonstrated there.
Obviously, we have cool things on Hana to share with you next week – and I have no plans of spoiling it here. I am pretty sure some of them have real potential to be killer apps.
There is no consensus on what makes a killer app though – if existing SAP applications like Business Suite and BW run on Hana and a lot of customers deploy it, would they be considered killer apps? There will be some who agree and some who disagree and both sides have good reasons for their stances. If a high value use case comes out for a specific niche industry – something that 10 companies in the world can use and get outrageous benefits, but no one else has any use of it – will that be a killer app? I guess the opinion on that too is divided. What if the app is downloaded by 10 million people , but it does not significantly alter the top line for SAP? Will that be considered a killer app? I have a feeling that we won’t get consensus on that either.
So what then is a killer app? and is it a goal worth pursuing? and if there is no one killer app – what happens then?
As you would have guessed by now, I am at a loss on the killer app definition – so I will leave it to my readers to define (ideally in the comments section below). However, I do think that this is not as big a hurdle as I used to think 2 years ago.
All the examples I gave above of potential killer apps are 100% valid for different people – and whatever is the solution should cater to all parts of the ecosystem. However, it is probably different parts of Hana that help each scenario . Some apps need more of Hana’s raw power to process lots of data in quick time , others might need industry specific libraries, yet others might need Hana’s predictive capabilities and so on. And for existing customers – they need the ability to modernize their existing SAP systems with minimal trouble, as well as extend them and even build brand new apps from ground up.
So what is the solution – the solution in my mind is to treat Hana as a platform. Not a “run of the mill” platform – but a modern, standards based platform that caters to a wide variety of developers and customers. It should make it easy for developers to have a native, open and integrated development experience and should scale with their needs. And hopefully some of the apps built on this platform will get to a consensus “killer app” status.
SAP Hana Cloud Platform does this, and a lot more. Come to SAPPHIRENOW or follow along online – we will share a lot more on the platform direction there. Trust me you will like it – so don’t miss it 🙂