The first version of SAP Hana was released in 2010, before Hadoop and other big data extraction tools were introduced. While it is an older tool, SAP Hana is still extremely versatile. Many new big data startups are very dependent on it.
SAP Hana Provides What Hadoop Lacks
For several years, SAP has been positioning Hana as a cutting-edge solution for big data analytics firms. CTO researcher and writer Dan Woods wrote that SAP Hana provides several advantages that Hadoop and other open-source tools can’t address on their own. The biggest limitation is that open-source batch-oriented processing solutions such as Hadoop can’t easily process data in real-time.
Woods doesn’t argue that SAP Hana is a replacement for Hadoop. They are both valuable platforms that can complement each other.
Apache has been trying to develop a new version of Hadoop that can process real-time data on its own. However, it is unlikely that Hadoop will ever be a real-time data analytics tool. This means that Hadoop must be used in conjunction other solutions that can handle real-time data.
“Many of the goals that the Hadoop ecosystem is seeking to provide are provided by SAP HANA. Therefore, a startup that is ruthless about accelerating time to market for a big data solution should consider combining the ability of Hadoop to distill and analyze huge amounts of data with SAP HANA’s ability to deliver an in-memory, read/write database that can simultaneous analyze data and support transaction-oriented applications. This proposition will seem ridiculous to some, but anyone who is building a business application that uses Big Data, who has an open mind, and who is looking for the fastest path to market, should evaluate SAP HANA as a technology foundation to extend and complement the capabilities of Hadoop.”
Woods’ response was initially met with skepticism. However, in recent years, more big data analytics experts are beginning to see that SAP Hana is a wonderful complement to Hadoop. Hana is one of the few database management solutions that enables users to process data in real-time. Meanwhile, Hadoop is great for scalability and cost-effectiveness. Pairing the two together lets data scientists create the most powerful big data solution possible.
Shortly after Woods wrote his piece, SAP began discussing the benefits of Hana for big data analytics startups. One of the main selling points with SAP Hana is the encryption. SAP states that it can’t see the code of any of its users, so their intellectual property rights are highly secure.
Some of the companies that are investing in SAP Hana are ones you would least expect. One ink and toner store has stated that merging big data analytics with SAP Hana has helped them track their most profitable buyers more easily, which has boosted their ROI sharply.
Many data analytics companies recently discussed the many benefits of SAP Hana. Cyrille Vincey, CEO and Founder of qunb (a data analytics company that is very reliant on Hana), pointed out that it is very robust and processes data very efficiently.
Of course, other big data technologies should be used in conjunction with Hadoop and Hana. MapR is another tool they should have at their disposal because it allows brands to access enterprise data that is unavailable with big data tools such as Hadoop.
Since more start-ups are exploring the benefits of SAP Hana, the demand for specialized Hana apps has exploded. SAP Fiori apps can be used to create customizable UX solutions for SAP projects.
Looking for Complements of Hadoop, Not Replacements
Hadoop has become a household word in the big data industry. Many journalists that lack actual experience in big data management question whether there is any room for competitors. They are looking at it the wrong way. SAP Hana, MapR, and other data management tools all provide valuable solutions that Hadoop lacks.
Startups are recognizing that SAP Hana is an invaluable tool. They will need to find ways to integrate it into their data solutions to get the most bang for their buck.