Lumira is one example of SAP’s current state of disarray regarding big data intelligence. First, Lumira was free to use as public domain. Then, its enterprise analytics version had to be licensed. Ultimately, SAP decided to discontinue it – disregarding the concerns of user groups and customers.
Lumira 2.0 was supposed to support SAP’s hybrid BI strategy and provide new interoperability possibilities for IT and other departments.
Lumira was SAP’s data analytics and visualization software, helping customers create highly scalable business intelligence applications. The solution was able to analyze on prem as well as cloud data.
Users were satisfied with Lumira. “The new user interface is fantastic,” said, for example, Jason Shearer, Lead Data Scientist, L3 Technologies. “I’m excited about the possibility to combine data from different sources. This enables users to quickly create prototypes.”
Analytics Cloud and Hub
Despite all of the positive customer feedback for Lumira 2.0 and the focus on SAP Leonardo, former CTO Bernd Leukert showed the SAP community no mercy. Lumira had to die!
SAP set new BI priorities. Its new strategy involves cloud and hybrid system environments, and BI is now part of digital innovation portfolio Leonardo.
SAP Analytics Cloud and Hub offers customers important analytics functionalities. It is supposed to enable customers to quickly analyze and visualize data as well as create plans and predictions – all in an integrated, cloud-based analytics solution on SAP Cloud Platform.
New functionalities include faster data access from applications Business Warehouse and S/4; support for hybrid data scenarios; allowing data to remain in on prem systems; intelligent data analytics comprising functionalities for machine learning and data simulation to reveal hidden information; as well as support for processing big data.
PAL and ML
The possibilities of SAP’s new Analytics Cloud and Hub concept are welcome and necessary. However, SAP’s actions and statements show no clear strategy.
Many of the before mentioned functionalities were already available in Hana PAL (Predictive Analytics Library) or in Lumira. Nvidia helps realize machine and deep learning scenarios because Hana was never meant for that.
Hana’s strengths lie elsewhere. Next to a SQL database, Hana can provide a Graph database, which can have significant advantages compared to SQL.
SAP offers customers from different industries machine learning and analytics functionalities with the integration of Leonardo. However, Leonardo lacks a clear strategy. It’s not a solution, it’s a collective term for any new technology trends that SAP wants to be part of.
Of course, Leonardo provides customers with real-time analysis, machine learning, and everything else that SAP promises customers. That’s not the point, though.
The point is that Hana Predictive Analytics Library (PAL) was already able to provide customers with these functionalities two years ago. It was integrated in the digital core and knew 300 commands for higher statistics which got the job of predictive analytics done just as well as Leonardo. SAP shouldn’t consistently try to reinvent the wheel, but focus on real, sustainable innovation.