More big data goodness on the IBM SmartCloud. This time, the result is an increase in the speed of reporting and analytics as well as the availability of SAP’s in-memory database the SAP High Performance Analytics Appliance (SAP HANA), and at the core of the announcement, its new BLU Acceleration technology.


BLU is a relatively new release from IBM Research and Development labs and enables bigger and more powerful analytics deployments by adding In-memory analytics to DB2 database software on the SmartCoud. With it, enterprises and even governments can dramatically speed up the analysis of data and the production of actionable analytics, as well as simplify the way the data analysis processes are carried out.

As an example, IBM cites Cognos Business Intelligence with Dynamic Cubes. Powered by DB2, BLU provides data upload speeds that are 18 times faster than without it, and provides answers 14 times faster as well. IBM also cites the example of DB2 10.5 with BLU Acceleration. In this case, combined with BLU Acceleration, analytics workloads have been measured at 1000 times faster than other databases not working with BLU.

BLU Technology

These are IBM's figures and need to be verified independently, but if you take it at face value, that makes it pretty damn quick. Other abilities include:

  • Big Data: Ability to scale according to big data needs without the limitations of systems currently on the market
  • Load and go: Access to rapid analytics without having to add a separate layer of data modelling
  • Parallel vector processing: Parallel processing in different processors at the same time
  • Actionable compression: Up to 10 times storage space savings through compression.

IBM also announced that the SmartCloud is now accessible for SAP HANA. This means that that there will be a physical SAP HANA Appliance on IBM SmartCloud. Both the physical and virtual SAP HANA Appliances on SmartCloud are offered on a ‘bring your own license’ (BYOL) model, but if you’re interested, the license can be purchased through IBM when working with IBM Global Business Services.