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This was an overview of Design Studio and roadmap and with live demo by Jie Deng, who is the SAP product manager for Design Studio

Figure 1: Source: SAP

Figure 1 shows the SAP Statement of Dashboarding direction, published earlier this year

The Future of Dashboards - Strategy and Direction

Jie explains the types – firs type is self-service dashboarding – the user will build the dashboards themselves.  It should be easy to use.  SAP has Exploration Views, BI Workspaces, and Visual Intelligence.

On the right you have IT or power users will create the dashboarding and the end users will consume dashboard.  This dashboard has expectation of mobility and published broadly in company and data comes from IT centric deployment.  Solutions are BI Dashboards, BEx Web Application Designer and Design Studio. In the future they plan to consolidate to one tool, says Jie, Design Studio.

Figure 2: Source: SAP

Design Studio 1.0 is generally available this week (year 2012)

Phase 2 will include more components for HTML5 and offer more 3rd party API’s.  HTML5 rendering technology will allow them to convert XCelsius to Design Studio application and BEx WAD to Design Studio and will open offline scenarios and third party data access.

Figure 3: Source: SAP

Figure 3 answers what does it mean now, year 2012?

If customer is using BEx Web Application Designer, they may consider Design Studio

If using Dashboards/XCelsius and back-end is BW, they may consider Design Studio

If data is coming from non-SAP or relational databases, and recommend Dashboards and use the new HTML5 functionality.

Figure 4: Source: SAP

Figure 4 shows the features of Design Studio

It has a design time eclipse environment with WYSIWYG as you design ; this is  a difference from BEx Web Application Designer and an advantage.

Scripting editor allows you define the interactions between the components in the application.  So when you click on a button, or chart – you can define in the script editor.  JavaScript used is Xtext, a subset.  You do not need to know JavaScript as you get content assistance.

It is integrated in BI Launchpad and uses the life cycle management of BI platform.  It provide iPad and desktop themes.

Release 1.0 has iPad support and uses pre-delivered iPad templates and themes and components such as pagebook  that allows swipe gestures to swipe from one page to another.  It renders in HTML5.  It uses BICS interface from BW and Hana

All BEx queries, views, info providers – calculation views and analytic views from Hana are data sources.

Figure 5: Source: SAP

It offers HTML5 rendering which means it can run on different browsers

It is integrated into SAP Mobile BI solutions for large community of users using native iOS application

Figure 5 shows SAP mobile BI application and on the right is an example of the application

You can write annotations, comments, screenshots,  e-mail to colleagues, and SAP StreamWork

For large mobile communities Jie recommends using the Mobile BI application

Figure 6: Source: SAP

SAP has built interoperability between Analysis Office and Design Studio

In Analysis Office you can build conditions, local data using BW Workspaces, and then you can reuse workbook data in Design Studio application and publish to iPad

You can import into Design Studio and then publish into web, browser or iPad.

Figure 7: Source: SAP

Figure 7 shows the initial edit viewer, which I like because you do not need to go back to the BEx query to add a field.

Figure 8: Source: SAP

In the demo during this webcast, Jie demonstrated the hierarchy features shown in Figure 8.

Figure 9: Source: SAP

During the demo, Jie demonstrated the pixel-precise layout and WYSIWYG features shown in Figure 9.

Figure 10: Source: SAP

Figure 10 shows a comparison by SAP between BEx Web Application Designer and Design Studio

Figure 11: Source: SAP

Figure 11 announces general availability of Design Studio and a summary of features.

Figure 12: Source: SAP

Figure 12 is the roadmap. Note the usual disclaimer applies to roadmaps, that they are subject to change at any time.  Version 1.0 is now GA.

Next version planned for Q2 2013 will have more visualization options, charting options, variable prompts via BEx, other SAP deployment options, and an SDK phase 1.

Future, planned to concentrate on conversion support, third party data sources including universes, and BW-IP features, and offline scenarios.

Important Links:

Release note:

PAM Information

Release blog( information about product overview and license topic)



Demo by Ian Mayor at SAPPHIRE Madrid

Subset of Question & Answer:

Q: How do we download Design Studio? Is it bundled (same installer) with Dashboards 4 SP5?

A: You should see a separate download for Design Studio if you have a Dashboard License – see it available in the Software Distribution Center ( if licensed.

Q: How does Visual Intelligence fit into this Roadmap?

A: VISI is an exploration tool expanding on the functionality of SAP Explorer

Q: It is mentioned iOS in the slides, but only iPad name appears. Will Design Studio be able to deploy to iPhone?

A: You can deploy to iPhone but the dashboard isn't really sized for it.

Q: Are the server component install bundled with BIP 4.0 SP5 or a separate download/installer?

A: Server component is not part of SP05 but comes with Design Studio download

Q: To use the mobile clients with BI platform, do you need SUP configured?

A: SUP is not required

Q: If I need to just save them locally do i still need SP05 for my client tools?

A:  If you save locally SP05 is not required or can  use Design studio standalone to create applications locally

Q: Last week we learned SP04 was needed Self servicing dashboard , does this mean for the self service it is the Explorer? or dashboard designer? See the slides after the webcast - self service is Explorer and BI Workspaces

Q: is there a way to convert the reports developed using WAD to Design studio, we have about 100 reports designed using the WAD 1.0

A: conversion from WAD is not available ; it is on the roadmap

Q: so this isn't an Xcelsius replacement it's more like Bex analyser on steroids?

A: 1.0 isn't positioned as XCelsius replacement - it is premium alternative to BEX WAD

Q: so it only supports SAP BW as a data source?

A: Version 1.0 supports BW, SAP Hana & if you have ECC Ehp5 (transient providers)

Q: when you change the query or hana view is it only for the current session or does it modify the source

A: It doesn't modify the source

Q: What is the scripting language used?

A: Xtext, a subset of JavaScript

Our thanks to Jie Deng, SAP, for this ASUG webcast.

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