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What's New in Oracle Commerce 11.3.2

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Gary Kirschner, Senior Director of Product Management for Oracle Commerce, gave a presentation about what’s new in on-premise Oracle Commerce 11.3.2.

Oracle Commerce Release Timing

Here is a brief summary look at the recent Commerce releases:

  • January 2014: Commerce Platform 11.0
  • July 2014: CP 11.1*
  • October 2015: CP 11.2
  • April 2017: CP 11.3*
  • December 2018: CP 11.3.1
  • December 2019: CP 11.3.2

*Treated as a “major” release

The image below shows the difference between a major release and a minor/point release.

Major vs Minor Release

Historically, the release number implied how Oracle released the new version. Moving forward, Oracle will identify each release as to which model it will follow and will not be tied to the release number. Oracle Commerce 11.3.2 will be treated as a minor release.

What’s New in Oracle Commerce 11.3.2

Some of the highlights of Oracle Commerce 11.3.2 include:

  • Improved tools for business users: Updated BCC and Workbench to remove Flex—make it easier to use and conform to Accessibility standards
  • Deployment flexibility: Updated supported environment application versions

Business Control Center (BCC)

Business Control Center (BCC) has several new capabilities and key benefits.

Flex Replaced with JET

All Flex is removed and replaced with Oracle JET. All of the remaining Flex UIs have been replaced with Oracle JET. Catalog, Content, Catalog Media, Promotions, Store Locations, Store Text, Preview, and Merchandising Home had all been significantly updated.

There are a few important points to remember with BCC. Any BCC customizations written in Flex must be rewritten in JET. “Customizing Oracle Commerce Merchandising,” available on My Oracle Support, describes methods for customizing the Merchandising UI, including information about customizations using JET.

Remaining UIs Updated

Remaining UIs have been updated for accessibility. JET UIs have been developed in conformance with accessibility standards. JSP UIs are updated in conformance with accessibility standards. Price Lists, SEO Tags, CA Projects, CA Assets, and CA Consoles have also been significantly updated.

Performance and Usability

There have also been BCC performance and usability improvements in Merchandising. Pagination has been added to the navigation pane in Merchandising. This page includes 100 assets in Browse Mode and 200 assets in Find Mode. The Selections persist across pages. Also, context menus have been added to the navigation pane in Merchandising. The menu items that were previously in the actions menu are now available in the context menu.

Site Administration and Targeting and Segmentation

Other improvements in Site Administration and Targeting and Segmentation have also been made with BCC. There is now the added ability to reorder or remove Asset Tray items in Site Administration, Targeting, and Segmentation. In the last two releases, the Asset Tray was empty or read-only.

Consistent UI Paradigm

With BCC updates, there is now a consistent UI paradigm across Oracle Commerce. The completion of the move from Flex to JET in the BCC and in Workbench contributes to the common look and feel across Oracle Commerce.

Key Benefits of BCC Updates

Some of the key benefits of these changes include:

  • Oracle JET is a modular, open-source toolkit based on up-to-date JavaScript, CSS, and HTML design and development principles
  • Properties are always available to edit, with no need to activate them first
  • Removes Flex technology, which will soon not be supported
  • Conformance with accessibility standards
  • Scalable performance when loading many assets
  • Quick access to common operations
  • Expanded scope for use of the Asset Tray to organize and keep track of specific assets
  • UI elements and gestures are predictable and consistent
  • UIs are easier to learn and understand
  • UIs are updated and industry-standard designs

Oracle Commerce Workbench

Oracle Commerce Workbench also has several new capabilities and key benefits in 11.3.2.

Flex Replaced with JET

All of the remaining Flex UIs have been replaced with Oracle JET. There is now an Image Selector dialog in Experience Manager. JET UIs have been developed in conformance with accessibility standards (Revised US Section 508 and Web Content Accessibility Guidelines “WCAG” 2.0 AA).

Remaining UIs Updated

UIs that were not Flex-based are now updated in conformance with accessibility standards. Workbench Login, Menu, Home Page, Experience Manager Preview hotspot menus, User Segments, Preview Settings, Reports, and Report Scheduler have all been significantly updated and modified.

Video Support in Media Editor

Oracle has added Experience Manager support for videos stored in MDEX. There is also now added support for storing an associated caption file. In conformance with accessibility guidelines, Oracle added caption control to video player in Media Editor.

Search for Rules Based on Location

The ability to search for rules based on location in Oracle Commerce Workbench was a customer-requested enhancement. In the 11.3 release, the ability to search for rules based on location had been removed to improve performance. This functionality has now been reinstated as an option. The search box in all list views (Find Rules, Folder Lister, Slot Contents, Audit) has a toggle for whether to search the location field.

Splitter Between “Mini-Tree” and Editor

The splitter between “mini-tree” and editor in Oracle Commerce Workbench was another customer-requested enhancement. There is an added draggable, vertical splitter between the left-hand “mini-tree” of sections and the right-hand editor pane in Experience Manager.

Vertical Scrollbar on “Mini-Tree”

The vertical scrollbar on the “mini-tree” in Oracle Commerce Workbench was another customer-requested enhancement. There is now a vertical scroll to the Experience Manager “mini-tree.”

Key Benefits of Oracle Commerce Workbench Updates

Some of the key benefits of these changes include:

  • Oracle JET is a modular, open-source toolkit based on up-to-date JavaScript, CSS, and HTML design and development principles
  • Removes Flex technology, which will soon not be supported
  • Conformance with accessibility standards
  • Business user can preview videos with captions
  • Ability to decide whether to include location for any given search
  • Users can easily find all the rules defined for a specific location
  • Can exclude location for better performance when search on location is not needed
  • Easily widen the mini-tree to accommodate long text without using the bottom horizontal scrollbar
  • Scroll the mini-tree independently of the editor
  • Easily find items in a long mini-tree while keeping the editor visible

Supported Environments

This is not a full list of supported environments, but supported environments for key updates include:

  • OS
    • Windows 16
  • App Server
    • jBoss 7.2
    • Removed WebLogic 12.1.3 and jBoss 7.0
  • DB
    • Oracle Database 19c
    • MSSQL 2016
    • Removed MSSQL 2014
  • Browser
    • Safari 12
  • WCS: 11.1.1.8
  • JDBC
    • MYSQL Connect 8.0 (dev only)
    • MSSQL JBDC 6.4
  • Containers
    • Docker, 18.x

The full list of supported environments can be found here.

The Commerce Suite was updated to support new environments released with 11.3.2, including Commerce Service Center. Commerce Reference Store is not included in the release. Non-validated integrations include Marketing Cloud (Responsys), Service Cloud (RightNow), and Social Relationship Management.

To learn more about what’s new with Oracle Commerce 11.3.2, check out Kirschner’s full presentation attached below.