As a long time user of integration platforms of various flavours (Gentran anyone?) I like to think that I have a pretty good handle on what I'd like to see out of a platform and where the wonderful world of integration is heading.
Having spent significant time with Dell Boomi of late I've been thinking about where the platform is going and what I think its strategic direction should be. At this point I'd like to add a disclaimer or two - I don't work for Dell and therefore this roadmap is not binding, but also any resemblance to the actual Dell Boomi roadmap is purely coincidental.
Application Programme Interface (API) management
First up is API management - I see this as a key area for Dell Boomi in 2016, they've made great strides in adding and enhancing this functionality to date. With the ease of enabling back-end systems to be consumed as API, this is a massive benefit over alternative API Management providers. Nevertheless, there is a real opportunity to do more.
For example, improving the analytical capabilities so that users can see which aspects of their API are most popular, as well as how each element is performing - in other words, enabling developers to better understand what their customers want and where they need to focus their efforts. Other opportunities for improving this area are in providing and exposing a mechanism to record API usage by user, this will enable customers looking to monetise their API through usage charging.
Internet of Things (IOT) applications
A slightly longer-term bet is enabling the platform for Internet of Things (IOT) applications, whilst you could use the platform as it stands to do so in some scenarios using Dell Boomi for full IOT applications would throw up some new challenges. Such as managing device registrations, keeping track of all the 'things' as well as the sheer volume of possible end points looking to exchange data in most IOT scenarios.
This requires a different mind-set to the usual Enterprise integration scenario that Dell Boomi handles so well, as such I think that Dell would be well served partnering with some IOT ventures to learn what works and what doesn't so that they can bake this into their offering. Allowing new IOT initiatives to benefit from that experience and make use of established best practice.
I'm a big fan of Dell Boomi's 'Cloud-enabled' features, such as Boomi Suggest, Boomi Resolve and Boomi Assure. And as such I'd really like to see further enhancement of these features. Perhaps, through the analysis of the nearly 2 billion executions per month running on Dell Boomi, the company could start to identify signatures of issues or potential issues. Such as increasing run time for integrations, or higher error counts - perhaps to the extent that proactive warnings could be sent to users when their integrations start to 'wobble', so that they can step in an prevent them from failing.
More bread and butter enhancements come from continuing to support the SaaS market, in terms of connectivity through enhanced and new Boomi connectors. With major software vendors, such as SAP, gunning for the Cloud, Dell Boomi must continue to provide connectivity across a wide range of applications and services.
Oh and one last thing...
Finally, one minor enhancement (just for me) - I'd really like to see better use made of screen estate in the Build area - especially for those of us working on customer sites with a small laptop screen. I'm sure that the 'Integration Process Header' could be adjusted or be minimised should the user require a bit more room!
Dell Boomi faces some key challenges in retaining its status as the leading iPaaS. It must further enrich its API Management offering so that it can compete with 'pure' API Management offerings from the likes of Apigee. In parallel it should look to develop an innovative IOT strategy, ensuring that it remains the 'go to' iPaaS for Cloud features and SaaS connectivity. All sounds pretty straight-forward then.
If Cloud integration is your thing and you're looking at your options for bringing together solutions such as SAP and Salesforce.com, why not join us at our forthcoming Dell Boomi Masterclass on 21st April? Click here for more details.