Business Intelligence Trends 2015
This data on business intelligence trends 2015 is taken from Google Trends and shows some interesting facts. Many of the established BI platforms – Cognos, Microstrategy, Oracle BI and so on show either flat or diminishing search trends. Many of the open source platforms are also diminishing, somewhat surprisingly – Pentaho, Jaspersoft, Actuate Birt. This data represents levels of interest – which may or may not covert into adoption. All the top trending business intelligence tools have one thing in common – they are highly visual and focus on end-user ease-of-use.
1. Microsoft Power BI
Microsoft is finally getting its BI act together with the release of Power BI Designer – a desktop dashboard and reporting tool. The Excel based Power BI remains, but it looks as if Microsoft will give more emphasis to its new strategy, and particularly cloud based BI.
Alteryx is an interesting product, filling a void that most other analytic platforms do not address. It allows skilled business users and analysts to analyse their data using a combination of data visualization and predictive analytics tools. It also supports spatial analytics where location is important. Alteryx places a great deal of emphasis on the ease-of-use of its platform and the creation of workflows via a drag-and-drop graphical interface.
The motto of SiSense seems to be ‘Join, Analyze, Share’. The ‘Join’ part of the equation is concerned with providing a unified view of data from diverse data sources. A great deal of effort has been invested here to address the data fragmentation problem (the kiss of death in many BI projects), and a columnar database is employed to provide speed and data joining functionality.
Spotfire challenges the received wisdom that sophisticated technology is complex, and that easy-to-use technology is unsophisticated. For the large population of business users who simply wish to understand and analyze their data with least possible overhead, Spotfire will oblige. This is particularly true of version 7 where considerable effort has been made to automate routine tasks.
Birst offers a complete BI ecosystem, delivered as SaaS and if necessary as a software appliance within the organisation. Great emphasis is placed on various data storage mechanisms (data warehouse, ROLAP) and sophisticated ETL capability.
Qlik offers QlikView for production analytics and Qlik Sense for self-service data visualisation and dashboards. Qlik Sense can be downloaded for free and a cloud version is also available. Qlik is well regarded for its associative data engine, which makes the job of bringing disparate data sources together easier. It is also an extensible platform where new chart types and other reporting objects can be cerated.
GoodData cloud BI is a full BI solution with collect, store, combine, analyze and visualize capability. It employs big data storage and HP Vertica for multidimensional analysis. The chart shows that the last year has seen a flattening of interest.
Tableau is probably at the top of its game right now, and has set the benchmark for easy-to-use, attractive data visualisation. Certainly other suppliers such as Qlik and Spotfire have had to raise their game to compete, but Tableau has established such a strong position that many other suppliers now embed it in their product offerings to satisfy the business user who simply wants to build a dashboard or shape their data into something meaningful.
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