A growing number of organizations are turning to the cloud for business intelligence applications, with private clouds narrowly surpassing public clouds as the platform of choice.

There was a 6 percent overall increase in organizations implementing cloud-based business intelligence applications in 2016, according to Dresner Advisory Services, which has just released the "2017 Cloud Computing and Business Intelligence Market Study." The study reveals that ad hoc query, advanced visualization, dashboards, data integration and data quality, end-user self-service and reporting are the most required cloud business intelligence features.

“Adoption continues to increase year-over-year, especially for public cloud offerings,” says Howard Dresner, founder and chief research officer at Dresner Advisory Services. “This has been driven largely by smaller organizations but has become more widespread.”

According to Dresner, “for the most part, this year’s results builds upon previous years’: importance [of business intelligence applications in the cloud] decreased and adoption increased. Many of those that said they weren’t considering cloud-based solutions last year or two years ago are now considering or have already adopted.”

Among the executives polled for this study, streaming analytics, social media analytics and the Internet of Things did not score as critical features to have with a cloud-based business intelligence system.

Asked if he was surprised by these findings, Dresner says “Not really. Streaming and social media analysis resonates with certain industries or functions, but is not important generally. In contrast, IoT will have a stronger foundation and greater impact more broadly.”

Dresner expects the trend of adoption to continue.

“Since we began to cover this market in 2012, we have seen deployments of public cloud business intelligence applications continue to grow steadily,” Dresner says. “Organizations are citing substantial benefits over traditional on-premise implementations. While challenges remain and improvements can certainly be made, we believe that cloud business intelligence, particularly public cloud offerings, will continue to move into the mainstream.”

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