SAP Uses Apple Machine Learning To Expand App Family

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Apple in the enterprise. SAP expands app portfolio with deal to use Apple’s machine learning tech

SAP has announced that it is expanding its app portfolio on both the iOS and Mac platform by utilising Apple’s on-device machine-learning technology.

It will see Apple’s Core ML integrated into the SAP Cloud Platform SDK for iOS for the first time, and comes as Apple continues to expand its presence in the enterprise sector.

It should be remembered that Apple and SAP had already signed a partnership deal back in May 2016. That deal saw both firms work together on enterprise applications for iOS, powered by SAP HANA in-memory analytics.

SAP SDK

That meant that SAP already develops native iOS applications built on Apple’s Swift programming language, and at that time, the German software giant also created a specific design language for its Fiori user experience (UX) to help developers build their applications.

On top of that a training academy for developers, partners and customers was established to help develop enterprise apps for the iPad and iPhone.

But now SAP has announced that the next version of the SAP Cloud Platform SDK (coming later this month) will help businesses create iOS apps powered by SAP Leonardo (the umbrella brand for SAP’s collection of software and services that firms can use to develop digital projects).

Thanks to the use of Apple’s Core ML machine-learning tech, apps will be able to run offline and “then dynamically update while connected to SAP Cloud Platform.”

SAP said that it has now rebuilt its most popular mobile apps for SAP SuccessFactors and SAP Concur solutions, along with SAP Asset Manager, to run natively on iOS.

Native apps are of course developed specifically for the device’s hardware and software, and are tightly integrated, so as to run more smoothly, and maximize both security and performance.

SAP is also expanding its native iOS experience across its broader applications portfolio, starting with SAP Ariba solutions.

SAP’s app offerings on the Mac platform will also be expanded.

“Apple is on the rise in the enterprise,” said Bill McDermott, CEO of SAP. “Our customers love the unmatched security and ease of use iOS is known for, and that it gives them a superior platform to build game-changing business apps. We have a strong partnership, and today’s announcements show SAP’s commitment to continue our innovation with Apple.”

Enterprise move

This sentiment was echoed in the Apple camp.

“Enterprise customers are seeing real business benefits when they use iOS,” said Apple CEO Tim Cook. “We are excited for SAP to extend these experiences further on iPhone and iPad, as well as bringing them to the Mac for the first time.”

And it should be remembered that Apple has been seeking more ways into the enterprise for a while now.

In 2014 for example, Apple inked a wide-ranging partnership deal with IBM, that saw Big Blue bring its cloud, analytics and mobile management services to iOS, and supply customers with iPhones and iPads running industry-specific applications.

Quiz: How well do you know Apple?

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Author: Tom Jowitt
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