iPhone Dictates Response Time For Enterprise Apps: Plattner - InformationWeek
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5/20/2010
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Bob Evans
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iPhone Dictates Response Time For Enterprise Apps: Plattner

Follow the logic: enterprise apps are surging onto smartphones, particularly Apple's iPhone. iPhone users will not wait more than 15 seconds to get a response from their device. Ergo, all enterprise apps-even down to lowly dunning reports-must be able to perform at or close to real time. For SAP founder Hasso Plattner, that 15-second maximum might as well be confirmed as a new law of physics.

Follow the logic: enterprise apps are surging onto smartphones, particularly Apple's iPhone. iPhone users will not wait more than 15 seconds to get a response from their device. Ergo, all enterprise apps-even down to lowly dunning reports-must be able to perform at or close to real time. For SAP founder Hasso Plattner, that 15-second maximum might as well be confirmed as a new law of physics.Yesterday at SAP's Sapphire global customer and partner event in Orlando, Plattner used his keynote presentation to give a detailed overview of the company's new in-memory technology about which chairman Plattner says, "We can do things now that are absolutely amazing."

And Plattner said the application of that new technology within SAP's products will be dictated not by any SAP technology or product strategy, but rather by the real-world experiences of the company's customers for whom mobile access and decision-making is becoming indispensable.

"People at SAP ask me, 'Why do you insist on running a dunning program in seconds instead of two minutes? No one is asking for that type of speed for a dunning program,' " Plattner said.

"And I tell them, "You are asking the wrong question: the right question is, how long will someone with an iPhone wait for an answer? And the answer is that 15 seconds is the absolute maximum amount of time people will wait before they go and start doing something else: check voicemail, send text messages, check email, send text messages to themselves . . . . This is the new reality!"

In a post yesterday called Hasso Plattner's Six Steps To Real-Time Database Nirvana, I described how Plattner's vision leads to the eventual elimination of databases due to the rise of in-memory technology and capabilities.

And while the SAP founder was unquestionably proud of the technology innovation and development work behind its two new in-memory products, he also was wise enough to divine that in these new times, the real IT gating factor has shifted from the IT tools themselves to the human experience of engaging with the information those applications and infrastructure provide.

"The simple reality is that 15 seconds is the longest anyone will wait for an answer on an iPhone," Plattner said. And a moment later he added, "So the real key is not so much the speed of our technology, but rather how we apply the speed to business."

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