SAP UI5 – The user dictates the design
At Xoomworks BI we recently ran an internal proof of concept for the latest version of SAP UI Development Tool Kit for HTML5 known as SAP UI5. We rebuilt a customer application for managing IT projects as a test. The process was fast and we felt we had complete control over the design and interactivity. We dictated the design, the tool did not dictate or restrict our desired outcome and user experience. For our test SAP has succeeded with it’s UX (user experience) philosophy.
A lot of Xoomworks BI work is looking at the current state of a BI system, quickly finding the gaps and filling them. With an eye on the latest technology to allow the system to succeed, have good user adoption, and sustain the system for the future. In our proof of concept Xoomworks BI found SAP UI5 has managed to fill the gap between the web development world and SAP BI. SAP Business platforms will continue to perform the deep analytics and operational reporting which define BI for decision making. SAPUI5 bridges the gap for those use cases trying to fit in dashboard tools. For example to client-facing dashboard portals, mobile applications for field staff or iPhone apps to see key numbers quickly.
The result is shown below.
SAP FIORI, the web application sets built using SAPUI5 for those that want to utilise SAPUI5 without having to build custom applications, encapsulates SAP’s UX philosophy:
Role Based – Allowing a user to do their job.
Delightful – In sympathy with modern work practices and the varied roles in the workplace.
Coherent – Consistent experience, interaction and design language for an enterprise.
Simple – Intuitive, fast, and easy to use the essential functions.
Adaptive – Adaptable for any device so insights can be fast and mobile.
At Xoomworks BI we believe SAP UI5 is the current future direction for BI Visualisations and User Experience. We have already seen SAP UI5, OpenUI5, and Fiori adopted by our larger customers. Building their own custom applications rather than using the standard tool sets of Design Studio, Tableau, or Qlik. SAP has used the tool as the go-to technology for all its latest presentations.
SAP UI5 creates its custom applications with an enterprise level background. UI5 is not a separately licensed product, it is integrated into SAP HANA, SAP HANA Cloud Platform, SAP NetWeaver 7.4 and above, and User interface add-on for SAP NetWeaver for SAP NetWeaver Application Server 7.3x. SAP sees their enterprise background giving quality assurance and supportability to UI5. OpenUI5 is an open source platform, free to use and currently under the Apache 2.0 license.
Below is our brief description of the three parts of SAP UI5.
OpenUI5 is an open source version of SAP UI5. The main difference is in licensing and the list of libraries. SAPUI5 is not a separately licensed product being part of SAPHANA and SAP NetWeaver, openUI5 is currently under the Apache 2.0 license. OpenUI5 has a shorter list of libraries without many advanced libraries such as charting. The most commonly used control libraries are shared between UI5 and OpenUI5. SAP says they will use the feedback from developers using the open source OpenUI5 to improve SAP UI5.
Fiori is SAP’s device responsive web application built using SAPUI5. Fiori was designed for customers to use UI5 without having to build their own custom applications. Fiori uses an easy to follow system of tiles for easy navigation to analytical reports and dashboards. Fiori’s web based application are device agnostic and enables the use of mobile devices.
The team at Xoomworks BI was impressed with the speed and ease of UI5 to create a genuine HTML5 web based application. SAP are engaging with developers and giving the user the ability to create a modern UX and UI with the assurance and sophistication of SAP to handle complex environments. We liked the control we had to truly dictate the design of the application. SAP is in a program of steady upgrading to newer versions of SAP UI5.
For any questions SAP UI5, SAP or Business Intelligence please don’t hesitate and drop us a line.