Software like Constellation brings Web 2.0 functionality into an everyday enterprise environment. With collaboration software, several people can work on a project at the same time – or at different times and in different time zones. Dates, facts, and opinions can be exchanged like in a Web forum and all the information can be retained for later viewing.
Dubbed by the IT press as a “Google Wave killer,” Constellation comprises two components: a cloud-based decision-making tool, which runs on the user’s Web browser, and an on-premises installation, which is located on the company’s server. The cloud part is code-named 12sprints and is currently in a closed beta phase. It is slated to be released by mid-2010. The company (on-site) installation is set to follow in the second half of the year.
The catalog also includes basic elements such as a timeline, a device for gathering pros and cons, and a discussion tool. Step by step, SAP envisages adding more business tools to those that are available now. Furthermore, SAP is currently working on integrating data from numerous SAP applications. To enable employees to use the data located in their companies’ SAP systems in Constellation, the on-premises solution must be installed.
Thanks to open Web architecture, smartphones, other devices, and Web services can communicate with Constellation and even integrate contents. Similarly, there are plans to enable Constellation to merge with other products, such as Google Wave. What’s more, SAP intends to set up a marketplace at a later date, where developers can offer their own integration solutions.
As far as the price is concerned, SAP is playing its cards close to its chest. According to David Meyer, three price levels are planned at the moment. One will be a free version, which will have limited functionality.