Welcome!

@CloudExpo Authors: Peter Silva, Pat Romanski, William Schmarzo, Elizabeth White, Liz McMillan

Related Topics: Mobile IoT, Microservices Expo, SAP HANA Cloud, @CloudExpo

Mobile IoT: Blog Feed Post

SAP Acquires Syclo - A First Analysis Over Coffee

SAP has doubled down on enterprise mobility, while Oracle is still not even in the game

WARNING!  These are Kevin Benedict's personal thoughts and opinions pondered over a cup of my favorite coffee shop's bowl of soul on the outdoor patio in the warm spring sunshine of Boise, Idaho.

My first thought when I received the news that SAP is acquiring Syclo, was, "Smart move SAP!" I respect the fact that SAP is willing to double down on enterprise mobility.  I also respect the fact that SAP is willing to brave the inevitable criticism for having bought the same solution twice.   SAP has smart leaders.  They have made an aggressive and brave decision with this acquisition.  I think they recognized an unmet need, estimated the impact, valued the market and fixed it.  I am sure this was not an easy decision.  It will raise many questions, but I am sure it will make Sapphire 2012 even more interesting (perhaps even more than Van Halen in concert).



SAP has doubled down on enterprise mobility, while Oracle is still not even in the game.  I find it fascinating that the SAP leadership has a vision and is charging ahead while Oracle is on the sidelines.  How curious.

SAP thought they were getting all of the features that Syclo offers (MEAP, SDK, production ready mobile apps, experience, talent, etc.) when they bought Sybase in 2010. However, once they had critically examined Sybase post-acquisition, they realized there were gaps.  Mainly, they spent $5.8 billion, in large part to gain a mobile solution, but then realized there were no batteries included (i.e. mobile apps).

Syclo, on the other hand, offers not only a mobile middleware platform (some say it is better than SUP), but has many industry proven, in production, mobile applications.  These are real mobile apps.  Apps that can transform companies and give them competitive advantages.  These are mobile apps that husky men and women with five o'clock shadows wearing uniforms use to build national electrical grids and other important infrastructure components.

Not only does Syclo offer a library of "real" mobile applications that are in production, but they bring desperately needed enterprise mobility skills, real customers and a passion for mobility to the SAP family.

Let's get back to the subject of mobile enterprise application platforms (MEAPs).  When SAP announced the acquisition of Sybase in 2010, I detected mostly unspoken frustration in the eyes of the Syclo management team when I interviewed them about the acquisition.  I believe they felt their MEAP was better than Sybase's.  It will now be interesting to see which MEAP wins out in the long term.  Yes, I know that Syclo has announced that their solutions will now run on SUP, but I think they agreed to this mostly under duress.

Syclo's SDK is designed to produce "real" production ready mobile apps, not just partial code for programmers.  I know of many large deployments of production mobile apps from Syclo.  Syclo has earned their stripes, and now SAP and SAP customers will benefit from this.

The biggest complaint about SAP mobility has now been addressed - the lack of production quality, real mobile applications being used by happy customers.  It will now be very interesting to see how the SAP mobility stack, stacks up.

The inventory and options for developing mobile solutions has now jumped up another notch.  It was already a challenge to figure out the best way to design, develop, integrate, deploy and support a mobile solution.  Now, instead of having hundreds of different ways to build a mobile solution in the SAP world, there will be more.  It will be interesting to watch how SAP works to simplify their message given so many possible ways mobile apps can be implemented.

SAP will now have the Sybase Unwired Platform, Agentry 6.0 and Smart Mobile Suite from Syclo, Sybase 365, NetWeaver Gateway and all of the other SAP ecosystem partners.  Things will get interesting!

I know the management team at Syclo and value their passion, expertise, perseverance and talent.  They have not always been the flashiest company, some even drive Smart cars, but they have demonstrated their value by quietly deploying thousands and thousands of real mobile applications around the world in production environments and making customers happy.

Now comes other challenges for SAP.  How do they merge and consolidate so many good mobile solutions that may not always be compatible with each other?  Will these solutions be adequate for B2C (business to consumer) apps, or is that a unique category that requires a different acquisition or internal development effort?  I know Syclo has been evangelizing their B2C apps for the past few months.  This is a recent push and it will be interesting to see how it holds up under more scrutiny.

How will SAP manage relationships with important partners like ClickSoftware which also has a powerful and competing enterprise mobility solutions called ClickMobile. SAP private labels a ClickSoftware solution called, SAP Workforce Scheduling and Optimization by ClickSoftware.  It has its own mobile client.  Again, this will be interesting to watch.

Does the Syclo acquisition enhance mobility in the cloud?  I am not sure.

I love enterprise mobility, and its a good thing because now my coffee is cold.

P.S. I reserve the right to change all of my opinions when SAP calls and yells at me :-)

*************************************************************

Kevin Benedict, Independent Mobile Industry Analyst, Consultant and SAP Mentor Alumnus
Follow me on Twitter @krbenedict
Full Disclosure: I am an independent mobility analyst, consultant and blogger. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.

More Stories By Kevin Benedict

Kevin Benedict is an opinionated Senior Analyst at Cognizant's Center for the Future of Work, SAP Mentor Alumnus, speaker, writer, and mobile and digital strategies expert. He is a popular keynote speaker, and in the past three years he has shared his insights into mobile and digital strategies with companies in 17 different countries. He has over 30 years of experience working with enterprise applications, and he is a veteran mobile industry executive. He wrote the Forward to SAP Press' bestselling book on enterprise mobility titled Mobilizing Your Enterprise with SAP, and he has written over 3,000 articles.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


@CloudExpo Stories
Everyone knows that truly innovative companies learn as they go along, pushing boundaries in response to market changes and demands. What's more of a mystery is how to balance innovation on a fresh platform built from scratch with the legacy tech stack, product suite and customers that continue to serve as the business' foundation. In his General Session at 19th Cloud Expo, Michael Chambliss, Head of Engineering at ReadyTalk, discussed why and how ReadyTalk diverted from healthy revenue and mor...
Whether your IoT service is connecting cars, homes, appliances, wearable, cameras or other devices, one question hangs in the balance – how do you actually make money from this service? The ability to turn your IoT service into profit requires the ability to create a monetization strategy that is flexible, scalable and working for you in real-time. It must be a transparent, smoothly implemented strategy that all stakeholders – from customers to the board – will be able to understand and comprehe...
What happens when the different parts of a vehicle become smarter than the vehicle itself? As we move toward the era of smart everything, hundreds of entities in a vehicle that communicate with each other, the vehicle and external systems create a need for identity orchestration so that all entities work as a conglomerate. Much like an orchestra without a conductor, without the ability to secure, control, and connect the link between a vehicle’s head unit, devices, and systems and to manage the ...
SYS-CON Events has announced today that Roger Strukhoff has been named conference chair of Cloud Expo and @ThingsExpo 2017 New York. The 20th Cloud Expo and 7th @ThingsExpo will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. "The Internet of Things brings trillions of dollars of opportunity to developers and enterprise IT, no matter how you measure it," stated Roger Strukhoff. "More importantly, it leverages the power of devices and the Internet to enable us all to im...
You have great SaaS business app ideas. You want to turn your idea quickly into a functional and engaging proof of concept. You need to be able to modify it to meet customers' needs, and you need to deliver a complete and secure SaaS application. How could you achieve all the above and yet avoid unforeseen IT requirements that add unnecessary cost and complexity? You also want your app to be responsive in any device at any time. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Mark Allen, General Manager of...
The Internet of Things (IoT) promises to simplify and streamline our lives by automating routine tasks that distract us from our goals. This promise is based on the ubiquitous deployment of smart, connected devices that link everything from industrial control systems to automobiles to refrigerators. Unfortunately, comparatively few of the devices currently deployed have been developed with an eye toward security, and as the DDoS attacks of late October 2016 have demonstrated, this oversight can ...
More and more brands have jumped on the IoT bandwagon. We have an excess of wearables – activity trackers, smartwatches, smart glasses and sneakers, and more that track seemingly endless datapoints. However, most consumers have no idea what “IoT” means. Creating more wearables that track data shouldn't be the aim of brands; delivering meaningful, tangible relevance to their users should be. We're in a period in which the IoT pendulum is still swinging. Initially, it swung toward "smart for smar...
"ReadyTalk is an audio and web video conferencing provider. We've really come to embrace WebRTC as the platform for our future of technology," explained Dan Cunningham, CTO of ReadyTalk, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at WebRTC Summit at 19th Cloud Expo, held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Financial Technology has become a topic of intense interest throughout the cloud developer and enterprise IT communities. Accordingly, attendees at the upcoming 20th Cloud Expo at the Javits Center in New York, June 6-8, 2017, will find fresh new content in a new track called FinTech.
Bert Loomis was a visionary. This general session will highlight how Bert Loomis and people like him inspire us to build great things with small inventions. In their general session at 19th Cloud Expo, Harold Hannon, Architect at IBM Bluemix, and Michael O'Neill, Strategic Business Development at Nvidia, discussed the accelerating pace of AI development and how IBM Cloud and NVIDIA are partnering to bring AI capabilities to "every day," on-demand. They also reviewed two "free infrastructure" pr...
WebRTC is the future of browser-to-browser communications, and continues to make inroads into the traditional, difficult, plug-in web communications world. The 6th WebRTC Summit continues our tradition of delivering the latest and greatest presentations within the world of WebRTC. Topics include voice calling, video chat, P2P file sharing, and use cases that have already leveraged the power and convenience of WebRTC.
As data explodes in quantity, importance and from new sources, the need for managing and protecting data residing across physical, virtual, and cloud environments grow with it. Managing data includes protecting it, indexing and classifying it for true, long-term management, compliance and E-Discovery. Commvault can ensure this with a single pane of glass solution – whether in a private cloud, a Service Provider delivered public cloud or a hybrid cloud environment – across the heterogeneous enter...
Cloud Expo, Inc. has announced today that Andi Mann returns to 'DevOps at Cloud Expo 2017' as Conference Chair The @DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. "DevOps is set to be one of the most profound disruptions to hit IT in decades," said Andi Mann. "It is a natural extension of cloud computing, and I have seen both firsthand and in independent research the fantastic results DevOps delivers. So I am excited to help the great t...
"At ROHA we develop an app called Catcha. It was developed after we spent a year meeting with, talking to, interacting with senior citizens watching them use their smartphones and talking to them about how they use their smartphones so we could get to know their smartphone behavior," explained Dave Woods, Chief Innovation Officer at ROHA, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 19th Cloud Expo, held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
"Venafi has a platform that allows you to manage, centralize and automate the complete life cycle of keys and certificates within the organization," explained Gina Osmond, Sr. Field Marketing Manager at Venafi, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at DevOps at 19th Cloud Expo, held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
If you haven’t heard yet, CollabNet just put out some very big news for managing and gaining value from DevOps. We introduced CollabNet DevOps Lifecycle Manager (DLM) — a platform designed exclusively for providing a single pane of glass, dashboard, and traceability views across your DevOps toolchain and processes from planning to operations and that can be traced back to planning and development.
@DevOpsSummit taking place June 6-8, 2017 at Javits Center, New York City, is co-located with the 20th International Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. @DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo New York Call for Papers is now open.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Fusion, a leading provider of cloud services, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Fusion, a leading provider of integrated cloud solutions to small, medium and large businesses, is the industry’s single source for the cloud. Fusion’s advanced, proprietary cloud service platform enables the integration of leading edge solutions in the cloud, including cloud...
Video experiences should be unique and exciting! But that doesn’t mean you need to patch all the pieces yourself. Users demand rich and engaging experiences and new ways to connect with you. But creating robust video applications at scale can be complicated, time-consuming and expensive. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Zohar Babin, Vice President of Platform, Ecosystem and Community at Kaltura, discussed how VPaaS enables you to move fast, creating scalable video experiences that reach your aud...
Regulatory requirements exist to promote the controlled sharing of information, while protecting the privacy and/or security of the information. Regulations for each type of information have their own set of rules, policies, and guidelines. Cloud Service Providers (CSP) are faced with increasing demand for services at decreasing prices. Demonstrating and maintaining compliance with regulations is a nontrivial task and doing so against numerous sets of regulatory requirements can be daunting task...