SAP has made OData the de facto standard for all solutions developed using SAPUI5.

Application servers are a primary source of OData and when it comes to SAP, NetWeaver platform and SAP HANA have a great understanding and provision of data for SAP UI5 applications. So, learning OData is a must if you are on the ground of creating SAP UI5 Applications.

SAP UI5 Framework follows the Model-View-Controller (MVC) Architecture. The data that is consumed in the Application can either be directly from JSON (external JSON File) or through OData.

This blog briefly explains how OData can be created through a couple of commonly used sources and ultimately be consumed on an SAPUI5 Application.

Depending on the nature of the Application and the type of data source, OData can be generated from:

  • SAP ABAP
  • SAP HANA

Playing around with OData using SAPUI5 Applications
 
SAP FIORI categorizes its applications developed using the SAPUI5 framework into three. They are:

  1. Transactional Applications
  2. Analytical Applications
  3. Factsheets

Transactional Applications:
 
If we’re creating an SAP Fiori Transactional Application, then essentially the data would be consumed from an ECC System. Transactional applications give a fresh look coupled with standard or custom functionality, having the ability to write back to the ECC system. Hence the OData that needs to be used up in the Application is created in NetWeaver with SAP ABAP as the primary programming language.

Similarly, there are ABAP CDS Views which can be directly exposed as OData and consumed in the Application.

Whichever the approach be, SAP Gateway of the NetWeaver platform plays an integral role in providing the necessary components for web interaction.
 
Analytical Applications
 
When we’re building an SAP Fiori Analytical Application, the data is available in the OLAP System. We can also expose BEx (Business Explorer) Queries which are held on top of NetWeaver System directly as OData.

We do have other options through which OData can be exposed by the SAP NetWeaver platform.
 
Factsheets:
 
Factsheets are pre-dominantly coupled with Enterprise Search and are read-only applications providing enhanced data view experience primarily around Master Data.

Now that we have looked at the three application categories and how we can consume OData through SAP ABAP, let’s jump into SAP HANA as a source.

When it comes to SAP HANA as a platform for application development, we look up to the server-side Java Scripting (XSJS) and ODATA. We can either directly expose the views from a HANA Model or by using SAP HANA as a database through XSJS or XSOData.

XSJS is primarily preferred when:

  1. Any kind of data manipulation is required
  2. Data needs to be represented in a specific format

XSOData is preferred mainly when an information view from SAP HANA needs to be directly consumed into the SAPUI5 Application.

Let’s discuss in detail about each source of OData in the upcoming series of blogs which explains about-

SAP ABAP as a source to OData through:

  1. Gateway Projects
  2. Business Explorer (Bex)
  3. ABAP CDS Views

SAP HANA as a source to OData through:

  1. XSJS
  2. XSOData

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