Last week, Gartner published the 2017 edition of their review of business intelligence and analytics platforms. The review is behind a pay wall, and, not conincidentally, all of reviewed platforms are also closed-source. In my opinion, Gartner is rapidly losing relevance because it is not reviewing open source and cloud tools.
I thought I would give a short list of tools that I think are worth investigating:
More than half of my list (Kibana, Quicksight, Shiny, and Zeppelin) aren’t on Gartner’s list, and all of those tools that Gartner missed are free. So where does my list come from? These are the tools that the big data and cloud blogs and conferences I follow are talking about. The big data players are bypassing the traditional vendors because they’re working with thousands of times more data now than ten years ago, and no one is going to pay a billion dollars in software licensing.
Based on their vendors’ history of successes, Apache Foundation’s Zeppelin, AWS Quicksight, and Microsoft Power BI have to be the favourites for anything longer than five years from now. In the short term I recommend thinking about a polyglot approach, with Kibana and Shiny in their niches, and one of the other tools in centre stage for general business use.
My chief advice is to make sure that you are in control of the tool, rather than letting the tool control you. None of these tools are going to solve all of your needs in twenty years, so you should be preparing for a smooth retirement when you plan your initial adoption.
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