Why is the SAP Fiori Cloud So Slow?

Executive Summary

  • In extensive Fiori testing, the first thing we observed is how slow the interface is.
  • This caused us to perform a speed test, which we published here.

Introduction (Skip if You Watched the Video)

The Fiori Cloud has received a strange introduction from SAP. When testing the Fiori Cloud, we found something even stranger about the speed of using the Fiori Cloud, which we have not seen anyone else comment upon. What we found contradicts SAP’s claims not only on Fiori but also on HANA. This highlights the highly censored information published on SAP and the problems of having virtually all of the information on SAP published by entities with a pro-SAP financial bias. You will learn about the Fiori Cloud and how accurate the claims are for the Fiori Cloud.

Our References for This Article

If you want to see our references for this article and related Brightwork articles, see this link.

Notice of Lack of Financial Bias: We have no financial ties to SAP or any other entity mentioned in this article.

  • This is published by a research entity, not some lowbrow entity that is part of the SAP ecosystem. 
  • Second, no one paid for this article to be written, and it is not pretending to inform you while being rigged to sell you software or consulting services. Unlike nearly every other article you will find from Google on this topic, it has had no input from any company's marketing or sales department. As you are reading this article, consider how rare this is. The vast majority of information on the Internet on SAP is provided by SAP, which is filled with false claims and sleazy consulting companies and SAP consultants who will tell any lie for personal benefit. Furthermore, SAP pays off all IT analysts -- who have the same concern for accuracy as SAP. Not one of these entities will disclose their pro-SAP financial bias to their readers. 

Fiori Transaction Speed Entry Test

A comparison of speed results.
Fiori TransactionLoad Speed in Seconds (Test 1)Load Speed in Seconds (Test 2)
Availability Check3.602.97
Order Products7.063.40
My Accounts5.345.22
My Spend4.243.65
Working Capital Analysis12.61N/A (Square Disappeared so We Could not Retest)
Global Cash Position3.854.15
Liquidity Forecast3.124.30
Track Sales Orders2.7934.25
Team Calendar3.6353.40
Adjust Stock1.8352.68

*All timings were taken using an Android stopwatch app. 

What About The Effect of HANA?

The presentation of HANA has been that it would enormously speed up both analytics and transaction processes. Hasso Plattner has stated that HANA will deliver zero latency to all applications. Suppose we take Hasso Plattner at his word. In that case, the Fiori Cloud squares/transactions should have been limited only in the Internet connection latency, like the web, database, and application server should have performed an instantaneous return. The total number of seconds should have been 0.00, excluding Internet time.

We tested the fastest web page we know of, Google, at .486 seconds. But Google only returns text (we tested it by searching for a word). Still, this would seem to be the rough latency of the Internet itself, .486, or roughly 1/2 of a second. So, while Google is very close to zero latency, SAP is far off the reservation.

*At 1/2 a second, as one has to hit the return button and move one’s finger to hit the timer, verify the data populating the web page, and then re-hit the timer, a very accurate measurement is not possible.

However, the Fiori Cloud undoubtedly has HANA, yet the application transactions take an average of 4.33 seconds to load. 

Fiori Versus Our Website?

As a means of comparison, we checked the download time of one of our web pages at Brightwork Research & Analysis. We end up with a time of 3.09. However, our pages have images on them, meaning the page is larger than the Fiori pages being rendered. The speed will depend upon how many photos the web page has (primarily). We have pages that will render more slowly than 4.33 seconds (the Fiori average), but this is a function of having quite a few images. Furthermore, we have far more text and formatting on a single page than on any Fiori screen we tested.

SAP Fiori + HANA Losing to Open Source Products?

However, why are our larger web pages loading faster than the smaller Fiori pages that only render numbers and text? Are we using some super fast backend? Hardly. We like our web host, but it is no top-end setup. If we wanted to invest more monthly money, we could get the speed faster, at a quite small cost. We could, for instance, move towards a dedicated server at our current host. That would increase the hardware available to fulfill requests.

What about the database? Is an advanced top-end database the secret to our performance? Nope. Our web host uses MySQL. Oracle owns MySQL, but it is an open-source database. MySQL is free. Does MySQL have a column data store and “in memory architecture” as does HANA? Nope. HANA does not compete with MySQL.

SAP has stated that HANA is faster than Oracle, IBM, or Microsoft’s top-end databases. But they are certainly not referring to open-source database projects. Open-source databases like MySQL, MariaDB, and PostgreSQL are not even part of the HANA conversation.

How about the application server? Must we be using a space-age application server, right?

No again.

Our host uses Apache. Once again, Apache is an open-source project and is free. Fiori uses the SAP Fiori Front-end Server. It is based on a NetWeaver Applications Server ABAP.


We did not start trying to illustrate that the Fiori Cloud is slow or that the Fiori transaction search only works inconsistently. We discovered these while just taking the Fiori Cloud for a demo. We have spent much time analyzing HANA and Fiori, which we have covered in articles like What is the Actual Performance of HANA? and What is in the Fiori Box. Even in fundamental analysis, like this one, we find that SAP’s claims regarding Fiori and HANA do not check out. If SAP’s “in memory architecture” is so great, why are Fiori and HANA outperformed by our combination of WordPress, Apache, and MySQL — all of which are open source and free products?

The issue is that no one is fact-checking SAP and publishing the results. Therefore, SAP marketing is proposing a virtually unlimited number of claims that go unchallenged. If SAP’s claims were true, it would demolish an open-source configuration standard for most websites. But it doesn’t; in fact, it loses to it.

Furthermore, the Fiori Cloud is supposed to showcase how superior Fiori is, and with SAP’s virtually unlimited resources, it should be configured for speed. Oh, and the search box should work, and it should work 100% of the time and without disappearing transactions.

Overall, SAP is presenting customers with a risky product in Fiori. I cover the topic of enterprise software risk in great detail in the book Rethinking Enterprise Software Risk: Controlling the Main Risk Factors on IT Projects. A large software vendor like SAP offers Fiori does not change these risks.

Fiori is much more involved than is commonly presented. SAP and their surrogates want to make the use of Fiori sound as painless as possible. However, because Fiori is not technically baked and used to drive customers to HANA, it is often presented under pretenses.