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IBM Bolsters Big Data, Cognos Cloud Offerings

Published
  • October 29 2014, 9:04am EDT

IBM is preparing to add multiple analytics applications to the IBM Cloud Marketplace -- an online mall featuring on-demand software from Big Blue and its partners. The new cloud additions will include Cognos Business Intelligence, SPSS predictive analytics platforms and the recently announced Watson Analytics offering.

The Big Data and analytics moves arrive as IBM strives to reinvent itself for the cloud and mobile revolutions. IBM's quarterly revenues have been flat or dropped for 10 consecutive quarters amid an over-dependence on data center hardware and traditional server software. Current CEO Ginni Rometty recently abandoned IBM's 2015 earnings per share goal of $20, conceding that such a target was no longer reasonable given IBM's recent business challenges.

No doubt, IBM has a strong portfolio of analytics and Big data software offerings. But many of those solutions were designed as on-premises products. In IBM's cloud analytics announcement this week, the company mentioned a Gartner forecast -- predicting that 25 percent of net-new business analytics deployments will involve cloud subscriptions or application services by 2016.

Already, the vast majority of Big Data and analytics startups deliver their code via cloud subscription models. Now, IBM is working hard to get on equal footing in the cloud market. According to a prepared statement from IBM:

"By bringing IBM's industry-leading analytics portfolio into the cloud, businesses, developers and individuals will have the ability to incorporate data-driven decision making into every business decision. Access to cloud-based analytics services such as IBM Watson Analytics can put powerful analytics in the hands of individuals to help them see patterns, pursue ideas and improve all types of decisions without needing to tap into a data scientist."

Still, it's going to take IBM considerable time to extend all of its applications into the cloud. For instance,IBM Cognos Business Intelligence on Cloud is currently in beta and is planned to be available in the first quarter of 2015. (IBM acquired Cognos back in 2007.) On a somewhat faster release track, IBM SPSS Modeler is expected to debut in IBM's Cloud marketplace within 30 days, the company said.

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