Tibco Spotfire Review

TIBCO
Product:
Vendor:
Founded:
Headquarters:
TIBCO Spotfire
TIBCO
1988
Palo Alto, CA
Ownership
Customers:
Deployment Model:
Free Trial:
Public
4,000+
Cloud, On-Premise
Yes
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TIBCO Spotfire At A Glance

Good: Ability to perform statistical analysis, automatically run reports and analysis at set times, ability to drill down to find root causes of business issues.
Bad: Difficulty in customizing visualizations, difficulty in drilling down to specific data details, technical difficulties not easily resolved.
Bottom Line: TIBCO Spotfire is ideal for companies looking to improve their sales and marketing practices and their customer experience.

Product Overview

Companies who require self-service discovery and fast answers to important questions may want to consider TIBCO Spotfire.

Spotfire allows anyone, from beginners to advanced analysts, to perform simple (and even complicated) analyses in real time, without having to rely on IT. Spotfire also lets users drill down to figure out the “why” or root causes of business issues – and can even find patterns or trends within the data that spots hidden opportunities or issues.

In addition to the Spotfire platform, there are other solutions within the Spotfire Analytics family:

Mobile metrics – Users can access their BI tools from any mobile device – they can access customized data or KPIs, and can even share results with others. Users can also provide comments on their data within the framework.

Cloud – For users who don’t want the responsibility of hosting and maintaining servers, the Cloud is a good option. With the cloud solution, companies don’t need to worry about purchasing additional hardware or software or employ resources to maintain servers – as all of that is taken care of by Spotfire.

Advanced Data Services – This can be a good solution for companies that have data housed in multiple sources and need a way to integrate all that data.

Statistical Services / Predictive Modeling – Unlike most other software we’ve reviewed, Spotfire provides the ability to perform statistical analysis. Users have the ability to perform R, S+, SAS, or MATLAB functions directly from the software. This feature is good for companies that need to know future trends or issues of their business.

Event Analytics – Companies need to keep up with the fast pace of their industries and stay competitive, so event-based analytics allow them to do just that. Users can access data, regardless of size, from multiple sources – and can even compare historical data to real-time data.

GeoAnalytics – This is another feature that is not found in most other BI software.  As maps and other location-based services are common on smartphones and tablets, it is not unheard of for businesses to take advantage of this – especially those in the marketing arena that want to find ways to enrich customer experience or sell products better.

Spotfire Automation Services – This function allows users to run analyses and reports at set times.  For example, a user can set a predetermined time to send email reports to various people. The benefit of automation is that it reduces manual efforts so that users can focus on other priorities.

Features

TIBCO Spotfire has a wide range of features – we’ve indicated their standard ones below.

TIBCO’s latest version of Spotfire, Spotfire 7.9, includes new features and enhancements, such as:

  • The ability to edit data within data sources and transformations
  • Severity-ranked indicators for troubleshooting data transformation if issues within a data preparation step
  • Loading more data within Salesforce connector
  • Support for Amazon Redshift, Asure SQL and OData within Spotfire Cloud Business Author and Consumer
  • Inline data cleaning functionality
  • Updates to location analytics feature, such as geographic coordinates within a map

  • Ad Hoc Analysis?
  • Online Analytical Processing (OLAP)?
  • Predictive Analysis?
  • Profit Analysis?
  • Trend Indicators?
  • Ad Hoc Reporting?
  • Automatic Scheduled Reporting?
  • Customizable Dashboard?

Target Market

A wide range of companies, from small businesses to large organizations, have used TIBCO Spotfire. Industries that have used it range from healthcare to manufacturing to government to retail. Below is a partial list of customers:

  • AstraZeneca
  • Chevron
  • Cisco
  • General Mills
  • Kraft
  • Motorola
  • Tampa Bay Lightning
  • Toshiba
  • Wyeth
  • Young & Laramore Advertising

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Implementation/Integration

TIBCO Spotfire offers a variety of implementation methodology, such as:

  • Analytics Implementation
  • Architecture Services
  • Center of Analytics Excellence
  • Domain Expertise
  • Learning, Enablement, and Adoption Programs
  • Migration Services
  • Predictive Analytics Implementation
  • Upgrade Services

TIBCO Spotfire offers a variety of training for the software. However, they recommend companies consider specific training courses based on time/travel distance, cost, and user roles. First, there is the Bootcamp Training course for administrators and developers – it is an eight-week course done with online materials and virtual meetings with an instructor. TIBCO does offer an onsite instructor as a substitute for virtual learning. There is also the mentored online training for users who need specific training. Also, Tibco offers traditional classroom training either at the company’s site or at a TIBCO office.

TIBCO offers discounts on the training packages in the form of Educational Passports. For example, for onsite training, companies can purchase up to 8 units per day for up to 12 students.

Customer Service & Support

For technical support, there is the TIBCO SupportCentral portal that users can access a knowledge base of troubleshooting issues and submit requests to fix issues or product enhancement. There is also the Spotfire Community forum for users to communicate with other Spotfire users.

Pricing

TIBCO offers a $200 a month or $2,000 a year subscription fee for its Cloud version that includes 250GB of storage. It also offers pricing for its on-premise Platform version but the plan is customized based on the client’s needs so potential clients need to contact them directly for a price quote.

Shortcomings

There are no unique visualization types available with Spotfire. It is also difficult customize visualizations. In addition, when there are multiple visuals displayed on the screen, they cannot be easily printed as a PDF or in a readable format.

Although Spotfire does include drill-down features, some users have encountered troubles attempting to drill down to details of certain data, particularly in the subtotals section.

Technical difficulties, when they arise, may not be easily resolved.

Screenshots

TIBCO Screenshot 1
TIBCO Screenshot 2
TIBCO Screenshot 3

About

TIBCO Software is a leader in infrastructure and business intelligence software. It recognizes that many businesses are juggling large volume of data and on-demand requests from executive and customers. Hence, Tibco established its Two-Second Advantage maxim, which provides the ability for users to get the most accurate and up-to-date information in real time in order to remain competitive.

Spotfire was a BI software company based in Massachusetts before TIBCO acquired it in 2007.

In addition to Spotfire, TIBCO offers event processing and integration software, as well as social networking tools. For instance, there is the tibbr social networking tool that allows users to collaborate and communicate, much like being on Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter.

Founded in 1988, TIBCO has offices in over 30 countries worldwide, including the U.S. It has been recently recognized by Gartner as a Leader in their 2014 Magic Quandrant for Business Intelligence and Analytics Platform.

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