SAP and Sybase team up on mobile sales and workflow

The first two enterprise applications from a joint development partnership offer secure access and high-end features

Almost one year ago, Sybase and SAP announced a partnership with an eye toward mobile ERP and CRM applications. Today, the companies are announcing the first products resulting from that partnership: Sybase Mobile Sales for SAP CRM and Sybase Mobile Workflow for SAP Business Suite.

Sybase Mobile Sales equips users with anywhere, anytime access to SAP CRM 2007, allowing them to work remotely while using the same back-end data as they would use in the office or on a laptop with a VPN connection. Sybase Mobile Workflow, meanwhile, lets workers play their usual roles in multi-part business processes, so they can provide input promptly while they're on the go.

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The natively-built applications use Sybase's Unwired Platform, designed to help developers build mobilized apps, to deliver SAP's applications to mobile users. Customers can get secure, real-time access to back-end data sources, so ensuring the most up-to-date information. CRM changes, for example, are automatically pushed out to users.

In developing these applications, SAP and Sybase took into account the growing trend of users bringing their personal mobile devices into the workplace. As such, both applications carry with them additional encryption to create an enterprise sandbox when the apps are being used. That runtime environment disappears when the app is shut down.

The companies also kept customization in mind during the development process. There are the usual out-of-the-box customizations -- locale, language, etc. -- but customers will also receive source code as part of an SDK so they can further customize the apps to best suit their business needs.

Mobile Sales is available for the iPhone and Windows Mobile devices, while Mobile Workflow is available for the iPhone, Windows Mobile, and Nokia Symbian platforms. SAP and Sybase plan to introduce BlackBerry support in the second half of this year and are also looking at supporting the Google Android platform.

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