About This Constellation ShortList™

The next generation of business intelligence (BI) and analytics products are harnessing heuristics, machine learning (ML) and automation to improve data access and data quality, suggest data sources and analyses, uncover previously hidden insights, and serve up predictions and even suggest actions. What’s more, natural language (NL) query interfaces and NL generation features are making it easier for users without knowledge of data science or query languages to develop insights and make better decisions based on data.

In the BI and analytics arena, these emerging ML-, automation- and NL-based features are best known as “smart” capabilities. These features are designed to help untrained businesspeople, as well as experienced analysts, make better, data-driven decisions more quickly and easily. Constellation sees smart analytics as the next step toward democratization, as even with today’s self-service tools, analysts and power users typically create dashboards and reports for broad consumption. 

With this Q1 2019 update, the Smart, Augmented BI and Analytics ShortList adds IBM Cognos Analytics (starting with release 11.1), which introduced automated data prep, automated join, suggested visualization, driver-based analysis and predictive features. 

Threshold Criteria

Constellation considers the following criteria for these solutions:

  • Smart data-prep capabilities, including data profiling, cleansing and formatting, data-join recommendations, data enrichment and publishing, and governance capabilities.
  • Smart data-discovery and analysis capabilities, including automated discovery, recommended tables and sources, and recommended visualizations.
  • Intent-driven recommendations based on behavior patterns by user, group, role, permissions, item popularity and data source.
  • Native or third-party natural language generation capabilities providing supporting textual descriptions around analyses for context andimproved understanding.
  • Natural language query capabilities that support data exploration and analysis through typed in (or speech-to-text translated) conversational language rather than SQL code.
  • Smart predictive capabilities, including simple trending and more advanced automated forecasting and predictive modeling

The Constellation ShortList™

Constellation evaluates more than 30 solutions categorized in this market. The Constellation ShortList is determined by client inquiries, partner conversations, customer references, vendor selection projects, market share, and internal research.

  • IBM Cognos Analytics
  • Microsoft Power BI
  • Oracle Autonomous Analytics Cloud
  • Salesforce Einstein Analytics
  • Tableau Desktop/Server
  • ThoughtSpot SpotIQ

Frequency of Evaluation

Each Constellation ShortList evaluation will be updated every 180 days as needed.

Evaluation Services

Constellation clients may work with the analyst and research team to conduct a more thorough discussion of this ShortList. Constellation can also provide guidance in vendor selection and contract negotiation.


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