A BI market dynamics snapshot
In the last few years, the major companies have all made sizable purchases of business-intelligence software companies. A few: Oracle grabbed Hyperion, $3.3 billion; SAP took Business Objects, $6.8 billion; IBM scooped up Cognos, $4.9 billion; Microsoft pulled in Fast Search and Transfer, $1.2 billion. And they have made a series of smaller purchases to add to their business-intelligence arsenal. I.B.M., for example, says it has spent $12 billion on 23 purchases in the analytics market in the last four years.
The real-time model of business intelligence, though, requires not just software, but a tight integration with hardware. I.B.M. has been working on this for years with tools tailored for high-speed processing of real-time data, like its System S technology for what is called “stream processing” — parsing data in streams in rather than after it is stored in data bases.