Since 2004, more and more companies have been adopting and deploying open source business intelligence (BI) tools; so many, in fact, that Gartner is predicting a five-fold increase through 2012. Large commercial platforms still have better functionality, analysts say, and few companies have made open source BI an enterprise-wide standard. Nevertheless, open source BI tool use is on the rise. Some open source BI support contracts exceed $500K for a multiyear subscription—close to the going rate for commercial platforms.
Mainstream commercial vendors typically do better with Type A organizations in the financial sector and in telecommunications. Open source is popular among midsize companies, government, healthcare and manufacturing, and in Type B organizations with less to spend.
Andreas Bitterer, research vice president at Gartner, said, “As you might imagine, the increasing open-source traction has not gone unnoticed by the commercial vendors. While often dismissed as being no competition, even the large established BI vendors have come up with counter measures to address the challenges from the lower-cost competitors.”