• September 13, 2023

SAS Unveils SaaS Products for AI Application Development

SAS at its SAS Explore conference in Las Vegas this week introduced expanded capabilities to its SAS Viya data, artificial intelligence, and analytics platform. The new products create environments for building AI models and applications, support multiple programming languages, and provide immediate access to scalable cloud compute.

SAS also rolled out an expanded partnership with Microsoft to develop AI guardrails and an integration of its SAS Customer Intelligence 360 with generative AI providers for assistance in streamlining marketing planning, content creation, and journey design.

"The intensity of today's environment demands organizations to be outcome-driven, and AI is critical to scaling human productivity," said Bryan Harris, executive vice president and chief technology officer of SAS. "We are constantly evolving the SAS Viya ecosystem with products to meet the emerging needs of data scientists and developers for increased productivity and faster innovation."

The new products in the SAS Viya ecosystem include the following:

  • SAS Viya Workbench, a lightweight development environment that quickly spins up and executes code, promotes a multi-language architecture, and enables users to build models in Python, R or SAS. An on-ramp to SAS Viya, SAS Viya Workbench also provides flexibility in the development environment with plans to include Jupyter Notebook, Visual Studio Code and SAS Enterprise Guide.
  • SAS App Factory, an application development environment for creating AI-driven applications. It automates the setup and integration of a cloud-native tech stack built on React, TypeScript, and Postgres.

SAS also used the event to roll out a marketing assistant for SAS Customer Intelligence 360, which can now be integrated with generative AI providers for the whole customer engagement life cycle, from marketing planning and audience creation to journey design, creating channel specific creative, through reporting and measurement.

SAS marketing customers can choose which generative AI models they integrate and use. Customers can bring their own generative AI, choose models from popular AI vendors such as OpenAI, or use open-source, privately hosted models. Additionally, customers can choose which capabilities to integrate, how they are trained and configured, and how they are introduced to marketing users, all via a custom integration framework.

"Generative AI is an exciting emerging capability that has naturally made its way into customer engagement marketing," said Jonathan Moran, head of martech solutions marketing at SAS. "Using this technology in a responsible manner empowers marketers to optimize time, resources and marketing budgets. Gaining marketing and advertising efficiencies and effectiveness is what SAS Customer Intelligence 360 is all about, so it makes great sense to integrate generative AI with our solutions with responsible, trustworthy guardrails in place."

SAS also announced that it is working with Microsoft to jointly develop a generative AI integration that combines the scale of Microsoft Azure OpenAI with SAS' orchestration of enterprise tasks and analytics.

It is also working with customers to develop generative AI workflows for industry-specific solutions in key industries, including banking, insurance, manufacturing, retail, and government.

"We know SAS excels in industry solutions with a wide variety of expertise, and we’re excited to expand our partnership with this emerging technology," said Brad Carlstedt, global director of partner development at Microsoft. "By leveraging Azure OpenAI technology, we'll be able to help global enterprises increase productivity and the confidence of their developer teams."

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