It’s been a distracting few weeks: A Brexit, two industry privatizations, and Microsoft acquiring LinkedIn. Does anyone possibly think the technology sector is dull?
So it’s almost easy to overlook that in the midst of this, Qlik released Qlik Sense 3.0 this week. There are a couple key things about this release and take aways from last month’s user and partner conference where the release was first announced.
Agile Releases: The vendor has continued to execute on its agile release cycle of three times a year for Qlik Sense.
NPrinting. Qlik acquired Vizubi, makers of NPrinting, in early 2015, bringing the ability to schedule and distribute reports via PDF, PowerPoint, and other formats to QlikView. The ability to publish analytic content is a critical capability we rate in vendors (see Critical Capabilities for BI & Analytic Platforms). As a sweeping generalization, this capability is a less prevalent capability among modern BI vendors, in part, because many would prefer to keep users immersed in the discovery aspect. And yet, it remains an important requirement for information consumers. So it’s a differentiator that NPrinting is now supported for Qlik Sense deployments, as well as QlikView.
Data Preparation: Qlik has added some smarts and UI improvements to the data ingestion. Dare I say, joins —or associations as Qlik calls them—even look a little fun here with the tables as bubbles? The joins are automatically created based on matching column names; Qlik claims they profile the data as well and are smart as to suggest based on data values if column names are different, but this was not my experience in testing thus far (check back for updates).
Gina Marie Deraimo, Director of Analytics, Wells Fargo Securities was one of the customer panel speakers at their conference. I liked her expression on how they had to shift their mindset and role from “data gate keepers to data store keepers.” They use QlikView to analyze data coming from 43 source systems.
Qlik Data Market. We wrote about this capabilities in our Qlik Sense 2.0 review and in the Critical Capabilities for BI and Analytics Platform note. It is a data as a service, pre-wired for Qlik Sense. There are a number of public data sources such as economic and demographic data that are free, but in this latest release they add stock market and financial data as part
of the premium, fee-based data sources.
Embedded and Extensible: One of the key themes of Qlik Sense was to beef up the extensibility and open APIs. The benefits of this were apparent in the number of partners in the exhibit hall at their user conference. For example, Host Analytics in the CPM space is now integrated with Qlik Sense for reporting and dashboard capabilities. LavaStorm had a cool demo on using their advanced analytic capabilities to predict NFL plays, a kind of market basket analysis for football. (Has anyone found a video of that- let me know!). Natural language generation was also a hot topic with both Narrative Science and Yseop in the exhibit hall showing these capabilities.
Privatization: Of course even at the summit, rumors of Qlik’s potential privatization were whispered in the hallway. Gartner doesn’t comment on rumors, but now that the privatization has been announced, here is our take on the transaction and what it means for customers.
As to the Brexit vote, personally, I’m still reeling. My husband is a Brit, and I lived in Switzerland when the Swiss voted not to join the EU. So I know we will all adjust after these initial shocks. I pity the HR person who will have to eventually adjust to labor movement and work permits. Let’s hope workforce analytics are solid for companies affected! And no doubt, physical location of cloud data centers will be impacted. But for now, we must all “keep calm and carry on.” Read this note on Gartner’s recommendations on how CIOs should respond.
And if you think it’s the lazy days of summer, think again! We’ve been testing SAP’s new BusinessObjects Cloud, IBM Cognos Analytics, and Tableau 10. Stay tuned! Lastly, I blogged about Peer Insights when it first launched last fall. Gartner has some big plans coming to make it more tightly integrated with the interactive Magic Quadrants next month. So if you haven’t yet rated your vendor and product, now is a good time. I think of this combination as chocolate and peanut butter together: analyst opinion and customer opinion! (Yes, I’m the chocolate side, please).
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