TIBCO is a software vendor best known for its analytics and infrastructure offerings. From APIs and systems to devices and people, TIBCO aims to interconnect everything by capturing data in real time wherever it is and to augment the intelligence of businesses through analytical insights. TIBCO’s analytics portfolio provides comprehensive capabilities to support a wide range of analytical scenarios.
TIBCO Spotfire is a comprehensive business intelligence solution strongly focused on visual and advanced statistical analysis as well as the design of interactive dashboard applications. Spotfire applications are optimized to deliver good performance through its in-memory data engine, through direct data source queries or combinations thereof.
Spotfire is also well designed for building interactive dashboards and custom BI applications with guided navigation. Users can drag and drop chart objects to the desired position on the screen. They can also effectively visualize data and intuitively navigate through datasets using the wide variety of chart types available. TIBCO Spotfire offers a wide range of capabilities to support collaboration through built-in functions as well as by using Tibbr, a separately licensed collaboration and social networking platform.
Aside from a full-featured desktop client primarily targeted at trained analysts and statisticians, TIBCO also offers web and mobile clients for Spotfire content consumers. By embedding complex statistical methods and models, data scientists can perform predictive analyses, leveraging capabilities offered by the S+ and R programming languages. To further augment its analytics portfolio and add new advanced analytics capabilities, TIBCO acquired data science vendor Statistica in June 2017.
TIBCO Jaspersoft rounds out the vendor’s BI portfolio with embedded reporting and dashboarding as well as data integration functionality. The Jaspersoft suite primarily targets product managers and developers who want to embed BI into their commercial applications. Its user base also includes non-technical business people who use the applications into which Jaspersoft is embedded. Jaspersoft is a popular option amongst the developer community due to its open source heritage and embedding flexibility.
User & Use Cases
TIBCO’s demographics in The BI Survey 17 are interesting. Its customer size and user numbers show that the vendor often sells into large accounts and mid-sized companies, and that the solution is commonly deployed in large scenarios.
The mean number of users indicates that it has some accounts running into thousands of users. Most customers use the product for dashboards and to query data. The above average percentage of users performing model/enrich tasks, and the fact that Tableau is named as its main competitor, underline the vendor’s strong improvements in the data discovery arena in recent years.
Spotfire has always been strong for querying data but its data preparation features have also been improved of late. There now seems to be more market awareness of TIBCO Spotfire for this type of use case.
In contrast, it is puzzling to see it competing with products such as IBM Cognos Analytics, MS SSRS and SAP BO WebI because Spotfire is not a typical reporting solution compared to those tools. This indicates that the interactive nature of the solution might be a factor in convincing customers to evaluate the product.
Current vs. planned use
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5 products most often evaluated in competition with TIBCO Spotfire
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Percentage of employees using TIBCO Spotfire
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Number of users using TIBCO Spotfire
N = 25
Tasks carried out with TIBCO Spotfire by business users
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Company size (number of employees)
N = 26