State of Innovation at SAP

There has been a lot of noise recently that SAP is slow to innovate or has somehow slipped behind the curve on innovating new products. These comments are fair for an outside observer, but it’s a lot like saying that the US defense industry has no new products coming up. In other words, just because you can’t see them, doesn’t mean they don’t exist.

This month at CeBit the public had a very small glimpse of what the guys are doing at SAP Research. I’ve been lucky enough to have been¬† seconded to Research since the beginning of the year and I was also lucky enough to have a small involvement in the CeBit project.

I often hear that SAP is too complex and I think you’ll agree that this couldn’t be simpler.¬†

The demo involves ordering stock from a large wholesaler using only a generic cellphone (based on S60). The small store (“Spaza” shop) is owned by a 65 year old woman. The cellphone is used to order the stock needed and the stock is delivered and invoiced automatically from the back-end.

I thought you might be interested in seeing some screen shots – so here they are:

The first two are mobile screenshots and the final two are products of the back-end SAP system. (These are not the final screens – they were in development at the time – The final screens are much nicer)

The Main Menu
The Ordering ScreenBack-End Using GPS CoordinatesInvoice received from Supplier
Back-End Using GPS CoordinatesInvoice received from Supplier
Invoice received from Supplier