ORLANDO: SAP has made its Fiori range of mobile and tablet applications available for free, after pressure from customers who felt they should not have to pay an additional licence to use the tools
SAP CEO Bill McDermott said the firm's Fiori and Screen Personas technologies will be available to subscribers of SAP's core software services at no additional cost from 3 June, during the opening keynote of the Sapphire 2014 trade show.
"We want everyone to run a simple user experience with SAP. We know Fiori is successful, but some of our customers and user groups felt SAP shouldn't charge for it and we agree, so now its included for free," he said at the event, attended by V3.
SAP unveiled its Fiori range of applications at its 2013 Sapphire show. Fiori apps are based on HTML5 and designed to offer businesses enterprise-level security and productivity services with consumer-style user interfaces.
McDermott claimed the apps make it easier for workers to launch critical work processes, like approving leave requests, travel expenses, timesheets and pay stubs, creating sales orders and customer invoices, and tracking purchase orders using mobile devices.
"It's about helping people do things in a simple way. Fiori now handles 300 of the highest demand processes in the SAP suite," he said.
Chairman of the UK and Ireland SAP user group Philip Adams welcomed the move to make the apps free, recognising it as a sign the firm had listened to feedback from its customers.
"We've been pushing SAP on this matter as our members felt strongly that they shouldn't have to pay separate licence fees for Fiori. This move shows that SAP is listening to its customers and takes the concerns of user groups seriously," he said.
McDermott said customers who have already paid for Fiori apps would not be out of pocket: "If you already bought it [Fiori] don't worry, we'll give you credit."
The SAP CEO said the move is part of the company's ongoing strategy to help save customers money by making its services simpler and easier to use.
"A lot of companies still have sprawling IT environments and on average companies have 50 applications per $1bn in revenue. We can't continue like this," he said.
"SAP Fiori comes to the rescue. Fiori takes complex work flows and makes them simple. It offers consumer-grade user experience and is built for mobile business."
SAP is one of many technology firms working to dominate the enterprise application market. Salesforce announced similar mobile cloud services expansion plans at its Dreamforce event in San Francisco in 2013 when it unveiled its Salesforce1 platform.
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