SAPPHIRE NOW and ASUG Annual Conference 2019, the largest gathering of SAP customers and partners in the world, officially kicked off in Orlando on Tuesday. The topic of Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) was front and center in the opening keynote as SAP CEO Bill McDermott interviewed Apple CEO Tim Cook about the expanding partnership between the two companies. Cook highlighted native machine learning and augmented reality capabilities that will be coming to SAP iOS mobile apps via the Apple CORE ML on-device machine learning technology. This will be included as part of the SAP Cloud Platform SDK for iOS in an update later this month.
SAP Asset Manager, along with SAP SuccessFactors and SAP Concur, is one of three SAP apps that have been built from the ground up on iOS. Cook demonstrated how augmented reality can enable a field maintenance worker to see a digital image that offers a view of the inner structure of an asset. That image appears based on location data and machine learning helps inform the worker about maintenance updates needed now or coming up soon.
What’s Coming to Asset Manager in 2019
Asset Manager is currently in its third iteration, and SAP discussed the upcoming fourth iteration during a roadmap session at the event. The app, which has been built to replace the SAP Work Manager application, seeks to provide not only offline functionality, but also enhanced capabilities when within wireless range. Asset Manager also provides and scripting environment for extending the app with a customer’s unique business logic.
Related: Mobilizing Maintenance Work with SAP: Which Application Best Fits Your Needs?
SAP has also built a native Android version of Asset Manager, and the roadmap for 2019 includes bringing increased feature parity among the iOS and Android apps. There is also continued work to bring feature parity between Asset Manager and Work Manager where necessary. The goal of Asset Manager is to be a simpler, more user-friendly application that possesses greater technological capabilities than Work Manager.
Planned innovations specifically for 2019 Asset Manager release also include:
- Hierarchy view and search control
- Improved feedback during data sync
- Equipment install and dismantle
- Local orders/operations/notifications that can be started offline
- On-demand fetch of business objects
- Dynamic forms for SAP Asset Strategy and Performance Management questionnaires
- Multiselect list support
- Parameter framework
- Enhanced document support
- Additional language support
Asset Manager Innovation Plans in 2020 and Beyond
The broader product direction of Asset Manager for 2020 and beyond is to add industry-specific modules, such as Linear asset management and a Supervisor module. There is also work being done to support for SAP Geographical Enablement Framework and provide more visualization capabilities. The slide below demonstrates SAP’s vision for Asset Manager and all recent and planned updates.
SAP’s partnership with Apple enables an app experience for field maintenance workers that mirrors what they see in other native Apple apps, and fully takes advantage of iOS functionality. The good news for non-iOS mobile users is that new capabilities for the iOS version of Asset Manager will also come to Android. So, no matter what device your employees are using, they will be getting the latest innovations from SAP.
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