Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Monetizing Mobile Applications in the SAP Ecosystem

SAP is trying to figure out the best way to monetize enterprise mobile applications and B2C mobile applications.  These are complex issues.  Extending the functionality of SAP to mobile users is a key goal for SAP.  They want to enable many, many more users to benefit from SAP. The mobile workforce and consumers are both areas where SAP can extend value, but how do they charge for it?

I have had conversations this month with several SAP ecosystem veterans about this topic.  They remembered conversations several years ago when SAP was quoting full PULs (platform user licenses) for each mobile user.  That did not go over well.  They have since revised that number down, down, down, but now you have mobile micro-applications that just expose little segments of value to users.  How is this going to be monetized by SAP.  There is value for micro-applications vendors and end users for using SAP functionality on an iPhone, but how should it be priced?  How can it be monitored?

SAP's goals are also to extend SAP functionality to consumers' smart phones in a B2C model.  An example would be an iPhone enabled catalog that is hosted on SAP.  It may include inventory updates, shopping carts/order entry, shipment tracking, etc.  How does SAP monetize consumer applications that are developed by mobile application vendors?

I would like to hear your thoughts, as this is an issue that is being worked through now.

Kevin Benedict
Author of the report Enterprise Mobile Data Solutions, 2009
Mobile Strategy Consultant, Mobile Industry Analyst and Web 2.0 Marketing Expert
twitter: http://twitter.com/krbenedict

***Full Disclosure: I am an independent mobility consultant and Web 2.0 marketing expert. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.