After all the criticism over the slow pace of development of its Business ByDesign Suite, SAP has finally released it with starter packs for SMB deployment. Also, new and cheap scanners can send documents directly into Google Docs.

SAP Upgrades Business ByDesign

Finally, almost three years after SAP (news, site) unveiled Business ByDesign, its SaaS business management suite, it has released a new version. Version 2.5 includes three starter packs to encourage deployment and should appeal to the SMB sector.

The new version is now available in the US as well as China, France, Germany, India and the UK. It comes with real-time, in-memory analytics, support for mobile devices, a customizable rich user interface and increased flexibility.

The new Business ByDesign Starter packages, which can be deployed for as few as ten users, are predefined, focused subsets of the full SAP Business ByDesign suite that are deployed simply and are available at fixed implementation prices starting at US$ 13,500 (€ 9,900).

A dedicated implementation methodology, as well as embedded e-learning, enables these packages to be implemented quickly, in as little as three weeks depending on requirements.

Packages currently available include:

  • CRM starter package: The CRM starter package provides customers with sales force automation. It can be implemented in approximately three weeks at a fixed implementation price of US$ 13,500 and a special subscription price of US$ 89 (€ 79) per user.
  • ERP starter package: Provides customers with integrated financials, accounting and analytics capabilities needed to manage growth. It takes six weeks to implement and is available at a fixed implementation price of US$ 37,500 (€ 24,900) and then US$ 149 (€ 133) per user.
  • Professional service provider package: Designed to give SMBs affordable access to business process management, it can go live in approximately eight weeks. The PSP starter package is available for a fixed implementation price of US$ 45,000 (€ 34,900) and the usual subscription price of US$ 149 (€ 133) per user.

Scan Documents into Google Docs

New scanning capabilities from document imaging provider iVina means that users of their BulletScan Manager 2.0 will be able to scan directly into Google Docs for less than US$ 500.

The new 1-Click BulletScan-to-Google Docs feature enables one-click scanning to Google Docs via a preset button on the scanner, which results in the reduction of over 10 steps in the scanning process to a single step.

No doubt Google will be thanking iVana for the new release as it is designed specifically for the SMB market and means that this market segment, which Google has been targeting recently, will be able to sign up to Google Docs knowing that there will be no difficulties in getting paper-based documents into the system.

It also incorporates several advanced image processing features in its BulletScan line and makes them accessible through an easy to manage interface.

Bizness Apps Offers Mobile Apps to SMBs

On the mobile front, the launch of a new company called Bizness Apps, which economically creates smartphone applications, means that SMBs can now start looking at providing their own apps to clients.

Up until now, while large and medium sized businesses may be able to afford expensive mobile development costs, small businesses have been out of the loop.

However, with Bizness Apps, a start-up company that will provides high-end, affordable iPhone applications to small businesses that are looking to expand their existing marketing efforts, that is set to change.

Bizness Apps has established a system that will allow them to offer iPhone application development, hosting, marketing and maintenance of the same calibre that large development companies use, and do so cheaply.

To create a company app, a company signs up for a free account and from there instantly begin creating an application. The process is very easy and it can take less than 20 minutes to create an iPhone application, the company says.

Once you are happy with your application, you pay to launch it into the iTunes App Store. Bizness Apps also handles the submission, hosting and maintenance of your iPhone application for only US$ 39 a month.

Expanded Security for SMBs in Cloud

News from the security space. Web security appliances vendor St. Bernard Software has announced its acquisition of fully managed email security solutions provider Red Condor, which is expected to enhance St. Bernard’s existing hybrid security offering and expand its cloud-based service platform.

According to St. Bernard, which serves the SMB market through a combination of high-performance appliances, software and hosted security solutions, the acquisition of Red Condor’s managed security solutions is a natural extension of St. Bernard’s product portfolio and business strategy.

It also will gain over 1,900 new customers as well as Red Condor’s extensive ISP and MSP partner network.

Clearwire Extends Broadband Agreement

And finally, Clearwire (news, site,) a broadband services and operator, and Cbeyond, which provides voice, broadband, mobile and IT applications to more than 52,000 small businesses across the country, today announced a new wholesale agreement.

Under terms of the agreement, Cbeyond will offer bundled 4G mobile Internet services to small businesses in early 2011 using Clearwire's 4G mobile broadband networks. This partnership will give small businesses the ability to leverage faster Internet speeds in the office or on the go.

Cbeyond's integrated suite of IT and communications tools and applications are available in 14 major U.S. cities with solutions serving 5 to 250 employees.