Chris Webb's BI Blog

Analysis Services, MDX, PowerPivot, DAX and anything BI-related

SAP BI Accelerator

with 2 comments

Via Mark Rittman, news (and good analysis of) SAP’s recent announcement of its BI Accelerator product:
Anyone who’s read the OLAP Report or the OLAP Survey on SAP’s BI offerings over the last few years, or indeed talked to anyone on the sharp end of a SAP BI implementation, will probably know that query performance has been a real problem for SAP BI. If, as Mark suggests, SAP have gone down the route of using COP database technology (see the entry here http://www.olapreport.com/glossary.htm for some more info) then perhaps they are going to solve this problem at last – which, from a competitor’s point of view, is pretty scary because even though SAP’s BI has got poor reviews for its technology, SAP have a formidable sales force and have been able to sell it regardless.
 
The only place I disagree with Mark is when he says "Where it falls short, I’d say, compared to products such as the OLAP Option is probably around calculations, time-series analysis, multi-dimensional queries and so on" – isn’t it the case that you can query SAP Infocubes with MDX? In which case, problem solved.
 
This is good news too for Panorama, who, as you probably know, have fled to the arms of SAP after Microsoft acquired Proclarity. Here are three interesting blog postings from earlier this year from Oudi Antebi, ex-Microsoft and now of Panorama, on Microsoft, SAP BW and BI:
He makes some very valid points here, especially the one about SAP ‘owning the data’.
 
Note to self: time to start learning SAP-flavour MDX too…

Written by Chris Webb

September 25, 2006 at 2:11 pm

Posted in On the internet

2 Responses

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  1. Although BW in theory support MDX (try transaction MDXTEST in BW), I had numerous difficulties using especially Time Intelligent functions like YTD(), ParralelPeriod etc.

    Paul

    September 25, 2006 at 9:26 pm

  2. Hi Chris

    Good analysis, I think this is an interesting product but so far it\’s slipped under the (non-SAP) radar.

    WRT the comment about lack of OLAP functionality, I guess I was referring to the underlying engine – as you say, MDX gives you the ability to create complex, OLAP queries using time-series analysis and so on. However the underlying engine isn\’t an OLAP engine, doesn\’t natively support this type of analysis, and therefore this sort of analysis might have sub-optimal performance compared to MDX against MS AS or Oracle OLAP. I only say \’might\’, as we don\’t yet know, but it\’s something I\’d look out for if evaluating this option for a customer.

    cheers

    Mark

    Unknown

    September 26, 2006 at 3:12 pm


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