Earlier this month, business software maker SAP released the latest update to its Business ByDesign cloud-based service, Feature Pack 2.6. Business ByDesign is an on-demand enterprise resource planning (ERP) and business management software suite for small- to mid-size-businesses, and the latest update brings a variety of enhancements, including a brand new software development kit (SDK) to help partners and developers create Business ByDesign applications and add-ons, as well as extended support for mobile devices.
From the sounds of SAP’s related press release, SAP Business ByDesign already supported the iPhone, but this new update extends the software’s mobile device support to BlackBerry smartphones and Apple’s iPad tablet. Business ByDesign Android and Windows Phone 7 support shouldn’t be too far down the road, according to SAP.
“In addition to supporting the iPhone, feature pack 2.6 for SAP Business ByDesign extends mobile support to the iPad and RIM BlackBerry smartphones. The next version is planned to include further support for the Android and Windows Phone 7 operating systems. In addition, partners have the ability to build native mobile applications that run Web services from SAP Business ByDesign, as well as build mobile applications using SAP Business ByDesign studio.”
It seems odd that iPhone support was available for Business ByDesign before BlackBerry support, if that is indeed the case—I have to believe far more organizations that use SAP products employ BlackBerry smartphones than iPhones. I also can’t help but think support for RIM’s new BlackBerry PlayBook tablet will also be announced in the not-too-distant future.
But the Business ByDesign Feature Pack 2.6 announcement is good news for SAP customers looking to bring ByDesign features to smartphones. And it should help SAP fill in a “mobile gap” in the cloud-based service, since BlackBerrys are currently the most-used business handhelds and the iPad is by far the most popular tablet computer on the market, for both consumers and enterprises.
Al Sacco was a journalist, blogger and editor who covers the fast-paced mobile beat for CIO.com and IDG Enterprise, with a focus on wearable tech, smartphones and tablet PCs. Al managed CIO.com writers and contributors, covered news, and shared insightful expert analysis of key industry happenings. He also wrote a wide variety of tutorials and how-tos to help readers get the most out of their gadgets, and regularly offered up recommendations on software for a number of mobile platforms. Al resides in Boston and is a passionate reader, traveler, beer lover, film buff and Red Sox fan.