The following information is related to recent updates to the SAP BusinessObjects BI release plan.
For updates to the EIM 4.0 Release Plan, including BusinessObjects Data Services and Information Steward, please refer to this post.
What’s new in the BI release plan?
With the recent GA of SAP BusinessObjects BI 4.0, we are updating our BI release plan. Instead of releasing both BI 4.0 SP3 and BI 4.1, we will now deliver one release consisting of:
- BI 4.0 SP3 customer fixes
- The new product features that were to be included in the original BI 4.1 release
What will we call this release?
It will be called SAP BusinessObjects BI 4.0 Feature Pack 3.
Why was this change made?
The change was made to ease the deployment of these new features. Customers can deploy these features on their existing BI 4.0 deployment without waiting for the availability of a separate minor release. Installation of the new product features will be a straightforward install that does not require a major upgrade.
What new product features are included with BI 4.0 Feature Pack 3?
There are many new product features in BI 4.0 Feature Pack 3. The highlights include the following new features:
- Next generation of SAP BusinessObjects Explorer, which empowers end users to easily organize and share exploration views with web and mobile users
- Enhanced capabilities for SAP BusinessObjects Mobile BI, with expanded platform support and Sybase Unwired Platform integration
- SAP StreamWork integration for BI enabled collaborative decision making
- Insight to Action framework, which enables closed loop BI in the context of your business processes
Are feature packs part of the traditional SAP release process?
No, the usual support packs only typically contain customer fixes or improvements to existing releases – no new features. We needed a deliverable that communicated all the new features – hence the feature pack. This is an exception to our traditional SAP release process. From time to time we make such process modifications in order to benefit customers.
Should I wait for BI 4.0 Feature Pack 3 to release before upgrading to BI 4.0?
No. The best path forward is to deploy BI 4.0 today to get the system ready for production. Then install the BI 4.0 Feature Pack 3 as soon as it becomes available. BI 4.0 Feature Pack 3 will be released with an update installer. The content of BI 4.0 Feature Pack 3 can simply be added on top of your existing deployment.
How can customers deploy BI 4.0 Feature Pack 3?
We will be delivering both a new installer and an update installer. New customers will be able to install BI 4.0 Feature Pack 3 using the new installer without requiring a pre-deployment of the BI 4.0 GA build. Existing customers will be able to upgrade from BI 4.0 SP2 by applying the BI 4.0 Feature Pack 3 update installer.
Can customers implement new customer fixes without using the new product features in BI 4.0 Feature Pack 3?
Yes. The majority of the new features are additive to existing workflows. Many are configurable by administrators. Others are available in the environment but the users have to explicitly select to use them. There are no features that will create major disruption to customers’ existing workflows.
Will there be fixes on BI 4.0 SP2 prior to the release of BI 4.0 Feature Pack 3?
Yes. We will continue to deliver patches on the BI 4.0 SP2 line (e.g., patch 2.7, 2.8, 2.9, etc.) to support customers currently rolling out BI 4.0. Learn more about the standard SAP support process.
Will BI 4.0 Feature Pack 3 include a ramp-up process?
Yes. Since the feature pack includes new features, this release will have its own ramp-up.
How can I get involved in the ramp-up?
Please contact your account manager. We are excited about the BI 4.0 Feature Pack ramp-up and will start accepting pre-nominations in a few weeks with official nominations beginning early January, 2012.
For additional questions to these changes to the release plan, please contact your account representative or feel free to add a comment, question to this blog post.