Last week, SAP released SAP BusinessObjects Mobile BI 4.4.27 to the Apple iTunes Store. I cannot find a release notes document and iTunes only reveals that the new release contains unspecified “technical improvements”. This release is not the one that will integrate SAP BusinessObjects Explorer for iOS (see related article, SAP BusinessObjects Mobile BI 5.0), so I can only assume that the new 4.4.27 release fixes some important issues that couldn’t wait until the unified app is released, sometime in the second quarter of 2013.
The SAP BusinessObjects Explorer app, currently at version 4.1.7, allows iPhone and iPad users to connect to the BI Platform in two ways: either directly to the Explorer application or via the Mobile BI server components. Back in April 2011, SAP released Explorer for iOS 1.0.1 which introduced the Mobile BI connection and removed the direct connection, requiring customers to license the redesigned Mobile BI server components. This action was disruptive to many customers who were using mobile Explorer (which existed long before Mobile BI started mobilizing the rest of the BI suite, beginning with Web Intelligence). The direct-to-Explorer connection option was quickly restored in Explorer for iOS 1.0.2 the following month.
However, when the unified SAP BusinessObjects Mobile app arrives in the next few weeks, I believe two things will happen:
- SAP BusinessObjects Explorer as a stand-alone app will quietly disappear from the Apple iTunes store
- SAP account executives will quietly appear on customer doorsteps to make sure they are paying for mobile BI server licenses
Hopefully your account exec will also bring a SAP HANA stress ball or some other cool swag.
UPDATE 06/27/2013: Mobile BI 5.0 Explorer functionality requires the BI 4.1 platform (see SAP KB 1870806), so SAP will have to keep the standalone Explorer app in the iTunes store a bit longer to support XI 3.1 and BI 4.0 customers.
UPDATE 10/08/2014: Mobile BI 5.1.6 and higher now support Explorer on BI 4.0 SP8 and higher (see related article, SAP BusinessObjects Mobile for iOS 5.1 or SAP KB 1958296), although there’s a lot of compelling reasons for BI 4.0 customers to upgrade to BI 4.1.
- Download SAP BusinessObjects Mobile BI from the Apple iTunes Store
- Check out Tammy Powlas’ recent article about the Mobile BI influence council
- SAP KB 1870806 – Will BI Mobile 5.0 support Explorer Content?
- SAP KB 1958296 – SAP BusinessObjects Mobile v5.1.6 client application for iOS