Tuesday, August 09, 2016

Recap of PowerBuilder Future Webcast 5

The recording of the webcast is available at:  www.appeon.com/recordings  The following is my summary of what was discussed.

SAP Agreement is Final

The agreement between SAP and Appeon was finally made official on July 5th.  A "new generation" of PowerBuilder is planned for release in 1H 2017.

1.  SAP Announcement:  http://tinyurl.com/sappbpr
2.  Important FAQs: http://www.appeon.com/pbfaqs
3.  Version 12.6 Bugs: http://www.appeon.com/pbbugs (to report 12.6 regression issues)

Multi step process before new version can be released

1.  Setting up development environment
2.  Knowledge transfer from SAP
3.  Missing pieces
PowerBuilder uses some third party technology that SAP may not be able to transfer rights to or which may no longer be available.  In either case, engineering effort will be required to replace the technology.
4.  Add new features
5.  Convert to new licensing system

PowerBuilder 2017

Agile development:  9 to 12 months between releases

PowerBuilder 2017 PowerBuilder 2018 PowerBuilder 2019
Win10Modern UIDesktop Cloud Apps
Native PDF New Graphs WCF Services
Latest DB Drivers JSON Support N-Tier TransFlow
Mobile Cloud Apps PBL Removal New Desktop Controls
CI Compiler New Mobile Controls
Testing Framework
DataWindow Spy

Mobile Cloud Apps is the ability to create iOS and Android applications directly from PowerBuilder.

Key Facts

Name:  PowerBuilder 2017
Codebase: v 12.6 Native
OS: Windows, iOS, Android
Availability:  Q2 2017
License:  Non-perpetual
Free Upgrades: No
Vendor: Appeon

There are no free upgrades from the existing 12.6 (USP no longer applies).  Instead, you will need to purchase Appeon PowerBuilder from Appeon.  Technical support will be from Appeon.

12.6 is the last version of PowerBuilder that SAP will release.  SAP's current EOF date for PowerBuilder 12.6 is January of 2018.

Mobile Cloud Apps

  • Most PowerBuilder features are supported.  All DataWindow styles other than Rich Text and OLE are supported.
  • Utilizes Cordova to provide API access to local device features.
  • There will be a later webinar specifically on Mobile Cloud Apps.
  • Appeon Mobile 2016 (available in September of 2016) can be tried out to see what the new functionality in PowerBuilder 2017 will look like.

Upgrade Process

Need to consider
  • Deprecated Features
    • Deprecated through 12.6:  http://tinyurl.com/pbmigration
    • Deprecated in PowerBuilder 2017
      • PowerBuilder.Net
        • Can continue to use existing SAP product (perpetual license)
        • Will provide improved web service capability similar to PowerBuilder.Net in later versions of PowerBuilder Native
      • Ghostscript
  • Environment Compatibility
  • Regression Bugs
    • If you are already on PB 12.6 Build 4098, you should not experience regression bugs with PowerBuilder 2017
    • Possible regression bugs with regard to RTE control, as it will be replaced in PowerBuilder 2017
PowerBuilder 2017 will migrate code from all older PowerBuilder versions, not just 12.6.

Cloud Licensing

You will be able to install PowerBuilder on as many machines as you want regardless of how many seats you have purchased.  The licensing won't limit the number of installs, but instead will limit the number of active sessions.
  • Virtualization friendly.
  • Telecommute friendly.
  • Offline friendly. - You keep the key until you actively log it back in.  You can be offline up to 5 days and continue to use the product.

Subscription Licensing

  • Simple
    • One fee to use, upgrade and get bug fixes for PowerBuilder
    • If subscription is not renewed applications will continue to run, but IDE will not.
  • Flexible
    • Change your team size a subscription at a time
  • Economical
    • Savings if upgrading every 6 years or less.

Subscription Pricing

Prices below are per developer, per year

Standard Cloud Universal
Desktop C/S
Desktop Cloud
Mobile Cloud
N-Tier NVOs
Unlimited Updates
Self-Help Support
USD 695/yr USD 995/yr USD 1595/yr

Premium support is also available at an extra cost.

There is no runtime charge for end users.

There are OEM plans available if you create commercial software using PowerBuilder and then sell that software to others.

You can mix subscriptions. For example, you can have 4 developers with a Standard license and 1 with a Cloud or Universal subscription.

Although the features that are unique to Cloud and Universal will not be available until 2019, there will be promotions before then at a reduced cost.

Key Take Aways

1.  Easy migration for existing customers
2.  Most urgent pains will be resolved
3.  Appeon will take care of you