Ask the average IT professional to name SAP’s claims to fame, and chances are they’ll tell you about its enterprise business applications such as enterprise resource planning (SAP ERP), enterprise data warehouse SAP Business Warehouse (SAP BW), SAP Business Objects and so on.

Pose the same question to a Big Data industry watcher, or CMSWire reader, and they’ll talk about how SAP is transforming itself into a leading-edge database vendor that makes companies smarter and provides them with the information they need to make decisions in real time.

They might also add that the combination of SAP Hana and SAP Sybase IQ 16 are well on their way to displacing legacy databases from vendors like Oracle, IBM and Microsoft.

SAP insists that its goal is to live in harmony with the aforementioned database providers and, for the short term, that may be possible. But in the longer term, as the volume of data that enterprises will need to analyze and leverage for competitive advantage, continues to grow, SAP’s Big Data databases and analytical tools will, more than likely, become irresistible options.

Introducing SAP Sybase IQ 16

Today SAP took a significant step toward that end by introducing SAP Sybase IQ 16. The next generation disk-based column store analytics server promises to deliver speed and power for extreme scale enterprise data warehousing and Big Data analytics with unprecedented affordability and efficiency. The new release is capable of scaling petabytes (versus terabytes) and answering queries in record time (thousands times faster) and at reasonable costs, according to Tom Traubitz, director of solution marketing at SAP.

By extending the power of analytics to more people and processes with less effort and expense, SAP Sybase IQ gives companies the power to act on insights that were previously impossible or unimaginable,” Traubitz explained in a conversation yesterday.

And this is a significant gain for Enterprises that want to win and remain viable. As Andrew McAfee and Erik Brynjolfsson wrote in the Harvard Business Review, “Data-driven decisions tend to be better decisions. Leaders will either embrace this fact or be replaced by others who do."

Learning Opportunities

In order to make well-informed, data-rich decisions at a moment’s notice, Enterprises need the capability to load massive amounts of data fast, requiring the need for velocity, lest systems be brought to a standstill. SAP’s Sybase IQ is able to ingest data at a petabyte scale making Big Data available to applications and decision makers faster, for in the moment decisions.


SAP Sybase IQ 16 Engine

This decision-making ability is needed by companies who want to make more money, spot market opportunities, delight customers or reduce risks. Though a limitless number of examples could be provided, some that are practical and easy to understand include:

  • Using SAP Sybase IQ 16 to look at coupon redemption data and to then leverage insights gained to modify media placements on the fly. While in the past it might have taken weeks to determine what was and what wasn’t working, today answers can be obtained in an instant and on demand so that appropriate action can be taken in real time vs. half-of-the-way into a marketing campaign.
  • Making cost-of-goods-sold calculations in a few minutes rather than in a few days thereby enabling Chief Financial officers and other managers to make decisions at the currency of business.
  • Detecting fraud such as identifying stolen cell phones being used to make international calls. In the past, only a dozen or so queries could be run in a day, today more than a dozen can be run in an hour.
  • Identifying cases and information related to customer churn so that actions can be taken to delight them before they go away.

Newest Features

For those who are familiar with earlier versions of Sybase IQ, here are the new features added to from SAP Sybase IQ 15.

  • Performance enhancements: The column store engine has been enhanced with extreme compression capabilities that improve I/O rates and reduce the amount of data to be stored on disk.
  • High-speed data loading: High-performance data loading ingests large amounts of data faster than ever -- from terabytes to petabytes -- making big data available to applications and people faster.
  • Improved scalability: Key improvements maintain high performance and efficiency for the growing volume of unpredictable, user-driven analytics workloads.
  • Data protection: Administrators have further options for protecting the security of enterprise systems.
  • Heightened availability: Enhancements help ensure that enterprise data is always available to business-critical analytics and dashboards.