This blog post will contain a comparison between the SAP framework OpenUI5 and the Google Framework Polymer. On my current work project I am mainly using OpenUI5. I was the guy to decided to use it around 2 years ago and I am still very happy with that decision. Nevertheless I try to keep up to date all the time. So in my vacations I started a small polymer application.
The polymer application is a reminder for medication. It is mainly using components from the 188.8.131.52 branch from the polymer CDN project. It is powered by a material design interfaces and uses some new HTML5 features. These features are not limited to polymer nevertheless I want to mention them:
- Service Workers for Notifications
- The awesome QuaggaJS to read bar codes
- WebCompoments (this is the basis for polymer)
As an example for an OpenUI5 application I will use my BPMN-2-FunctionsPoints example.
Polymer concentrates mainly on the view part and makes it possible to build independent encapsulated web components. OpenUI5 takes a more general approach and also ships with server compliant model implementations and has a clear seperatation between a control and a controller.
Here are some comparison tables
Organizational and development process comparison
|Release velocity major releases
|Release velocity bugfixes releases
|Releases according to github
|Contributors according to github
You can see that both frameworks are developing with a phenomenal speed. It is more about you catching up then about them releasing new features.
|Central Less Theming files
|Custom CSS properties
|Google Material Design
|XML (preferred), JS, HTML
|Official browser support
|IE11 further the newest and long-term-support releases of Chrome, Firefox, IE Edge and Safari
|Polymer 1.0+ works in the latest two versions of all major browsers: Safari 7+, IE 11+, and the evergreen Chrome, Firefox, and Edge.
|Consumable from CDN
|Yes, officially supported
|No, some hacks exist
So polymer is a little bit more modern in the choice of technologies but OpenUI5 has broader support.
|Recommendation for standardized server communication
OpenUI5 has more features but for polymer it is easy to pull in some third party libraries that help with server communication.
|Amount of components in main library
|Yes, Use: sap.m
|Yes, Use: app-layout and paper components
|Extensive Testing Concept
|Main component repository
|Yes, as a whole
|Partly, on a control basis with custom css properties
Currently OpenUI5 comes with a lot more components by default but in polymer it is easier to pull third party components.
Both frameworks are well documented but in my opinion the documentation for OpenUI5 is still better. Polymer is better known in the public.
|any (SAP Web IDE, UI Theme Designer, SAP Development Tools)
|any (Polymer Designer)
|Works on JS snippet sites like jsfiddle or codepen
|Yes, with CDN hack
Both frameworks are developing there own tools. In my opinion a framework should work with every IDE which is the case for both.
Overall polymer and openui5 use a lot of similair concepts. OpenUI5 is more mature and better suitable for enterprise application that need a lot of forms, master data management, and long term support. Polymer is a good choice for live style applications that benefit from the newest technologies.