SAP has unveiled the SAP Hana 2 platform, the company's in-memory database technology, combined with micro-services made available in the cloud via SAP Hybris-as-a-Service.
The company announced the Hana 2 platform at the SAP TechEd Barcelona event today.
The platform will be released at the end of the month, and an Express edition will be made available shortly afterwards to let customers jump-start new development projects quickly and at low cost, according to SAP, which has promised to update the software twice a year.
New features of SAP Hana 2 include database management improvements such as workload management and administration. For example, the new active/active read-enabled option allows IT organisations to use secondary systems (previously used only for system replication) to offload read-intensive workloads for improved operations.
Data management, meanwhile, now includes enhancements to enterprise modelling, data integration, data quality and tiered storage.
SAP also claimed that SAP Hana 2 offers enhanced analytical processing engines for text, spatial, graph and streaming data.
Improved application development tools provide enhanced functions for application servers, the development tools themselves and various languages, SAP said, while 'bring-your-own-language' support provides additional third-party build packs and runtimes that can be used in SAP Hana extended application services.
In addition, a new file processor API will let developers extract text and metadata from documents in a bid to deliver deeper insights.
The new SAP Hana services incorporate a number of analytics enhancements, including Text Analysis Entity Extraction, Text Analysis Fact Extraction and Text Analysis Linguistic Analysis.
"SAP pioneered in-memory computing with the launch of SAP HANA in 2010 and throughout our journey we have driven breakthrough innovation on a highly stable core data platform for our customers," said Bernd Leukert, a member of the executive board for products and innovation at SAP SE.
The company also highlighted the European Space Agency (ESA) as a launch customer, showing off the Earth Observation Analysis cloud service which it claims is already being used by reinsurer Munich Re to better price risk for natural disasters.
The service combines SAP Hana with the ESA's Earth observation data to provide geospatial analysis of natural disasters such as earthquakes, wildfires and floods.
"Every year, wildfires affect nature, people, their homes and businesses," said Andreas Siebert, head of geospatial solutions at Munich Re.
"While the progress of a fire itself is hard to predict, this new service from SAP, leveraging satellite data from ESA, allows us to accurately calculate costs and risks related to wildfires and even gain insights into the future probability of wildfires. This will help us to keep costs down for our clients."
The Earth Observation Analysis service provides a standardised interface for quick, easy consumption of detailed analytics, and clusters them according to customer needs, according to SAP.
Government agencies and companies active in all industries, from insurance and reinsurance to mill products, mining, utilities and retail, can use the API delivered through the service.
They can make improved business decisions concerning elementary industry-specific questions based on continuous access to historical and real-time satellite data from around the world, SAP said.
Questions may include where to place new power lines, where to build a new store or when to harvest crops.
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