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A common question from someone looking to get started with SAP Business Technology Platform (BTP) is which option to use to try out a service – Trial Accounts or the new Free Tier. This blog post is to provide information on the difference and help you with some recommendations.


SAP BTP Trial Account

The Trial accounts have been around for many years and allows anyone to try out SAP BTP for free with a restricted use of the platform resources and services. All you need is an email ID to register for an account. You can spin up trial environments in 3 regions (at the time of writing this) – Europe, US (on AWS) and Singapore (on Azure). To get started, you can follow this tutorial.

Your trial account will be made available for 365 days and would need to be extended after 30 days. If you sign-in regularly, the 30-day interval would be auto extended for you. There is a limit on the number of resources and services which you can use in the Trial account. This information is documented in SAP Help.  Its important to note that not all the SAP BTP services are available in the trial environment. To check the available service, navigate to the SAP Discovery center. This is the single place to view service details and with the regional availability of individual services on SAP BTP. Use the filter option and select the License Model as “Trial” and select the Provider as “AWS” or “Microsoft Azure”.

Another important consideration is that all the development work which you perform on these trial accounts can be used for trial purposes only. You CANNOT convert this Trial account into a productive account. You could subscribe to SAP BTP to obtain an Enterprise Account using either the consumption-based or subscription-based commercial models and manually move your developments across to your productive subaccount.

Free Tier:

SAP BTP Free Tier was announced in July 2021 at SAP SAPPHIRE. This enables customers to try out SAP BTP services with an easy path to productive use. All the work within the free tier can be maintained when updating to a productive service plan.

As part of the Phase 1 rollout, the Free Tier is available to existing customers who are on consumption-based commercial models (CPEA & Pay-As-You-Go).  When you login to your BTP Account, you will see this update popup.

New customers as well as existing subscription-based customers can sign-up for a Pay-As-You-Go contract which also includes the use of the free tier.

You can view the current list of available Free Tier services in SAP Discovery Center.  Additional BTP services along with access for individual business users/SAP Partners is planned to be made available in the next few months.

Check out this video which demonstrates how developers would create service instance using the free plan and later upgrade it to a standard plan for productive use.  This is also documented in SAP Help.

Similar to the Trial Accounts, the Free Tier also comes with limits. You will be able to see them under the “Free” plan displayed within CPEA/PAYG section of the pricing tab of the participating services. In the below example, the Launchpad service is available in both the Trial account as well as the Free Tier.

I would encourage you to go through the FAQs to familiar yourself with topics like SLA & Supports.

The Discovery Center also has missions for you to get started. Sign up for newsletter and stay up to date on all updates related to Free Tier.

SAP Roadmaps have updates with regard to the plan for Trial Accounts as well as Free Tier. I would highly recommend customers to get started with the new Free Tier as it provides an easy path to productive use. You no longer need to backup your code or your interfaces with the risk of the trial account being terminated. There will be additional services being constantly added to the Free Tier. Stay up to date with the newsletter and checkout the Roadmap for more updates.
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