SAP has given its users a welcome breathing space, extending support for older R/3 releases until the expected arrival of R/3 Enterprise in 2003.
According to analyst firm AMR Research, upgrading to R/3 4.6C takes seven to 10 months.
With R/3 Enterprise due to ship in January 2003, those not already on 4.6C are faced with the dilemma of upgrading immediately to a new release or to a superseded product.
The extension for maintenance makes it easier for customers, the analyst firm said. SAP will extend maintenance for R/3 version 4.6C for an additional year, until March 2003.
Users of earlier versions dating back to R/3 3I will have an extra four months, taking support up to the end of December 2003.
There will be no additional charge for users for these extensions, although SAP has confirmed that a two per cent charge will be levied for users of earlier versions after the December 2003 deadline.
The extension to maintenance support will ensure "a maximum return on investment", said SAP executive board member Gerhard Oswald.
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