This is Part 2 of this interview with Sybase's Sam Lakkundi.
Kevin: Historically, Sybase has not been known as a mobile application company. They didn’t want to compete with their OEM customer base. Bob Stutz is now tasked with developing mobile SAP applications in the new Mobile Application Business Unit. Why are they doing this?
Sam: I believe SAP does not want to leave customers without mobile application direction. They don’t want customers choosing different mobile solutions and mobile middleware for every business process and vertical need. There is no assurance of quality. This results in silos of disparate mobile solutions, platforms, integration methodologies and high TCOs (total cost of ownership). Enterprise mobility is too important. It needs to be strategic and planned. SAP can give direction and recommend quality mobile applications that will support a good enterprise strategy. SAP/Sybase will develop or recommend best-of-breed mobile applications that support this strategy.
Sam: I believe that soon, when SAP sells a solution, mobile extensions will automatically become a part of that sale. These extensions will be sold by SAP’s sales team as part of the solution, not as an afterthought.
Kevin: Where does this leave SAP’s mobility partners? Where are the mobile whitespaces for them to fill?
Sam: For the purpose of this discussion let’s say Syclo is SAP’s preferred partner for utilities. That does not mean that SAP or Syclo are experts in coal mines. Other mobility vendors can make coal mine specific mobile applications. There is a massive whitespace for mobile applications. Consider the SAP GUI - even after all these years there is a market for enhancing SAP GUIs. Vendors will have all kinds of opportunities to build better mobile applications and extensions. There are many whitespaces in verticals.
Read Part 1
Read Part 3
Kevin Benedict, SAP Mentor, SAP Top Contributor, Mobile and M2M Industry Analyst
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Full Disclosure: I am an independent mobility consultant, mobility analyst, writer and Web 2.0 marketing professional. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.