The Future of Mobile Business Intelligence

Posted: July 11th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Industry Insights | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

There’s an interesting intersection between the popularity of mobile devices and the appetite for business intelligence (BI). Inevitably, the demand to display and interact with BI on mobile devices is growing and will continue to do so as more mobile technology supports this function. Already, we have tablets and smartphones with high-quality displays and interactive capabilities – but this is just the beginning, if you take into account the full potential for mobile BI.

Mobile BI is mostly relevant in the consumption of information, which is reflected in the need for simpler interactions in BI infrastructures. After all, nobody wants to be writing complex code, like SQL, on their smartphones. Rather, one of the key benefits of a successful BI system is the ability to show the same information to all users. For instance, dashboard reporting with drill down functionality and reports that scale easily across devices will be vital for success. And the more access points there are, the more important this standardization is.

Let me also say, however, that mobile BI will not – and should not – replace existing BI systems. Instead, mobile BI should complement existing systems by providing organisations with added speed and flexibility for consuming the available information. I also believe the move to mobile will give even more importance to more advanced analytical methods. For example, the ability to easily, effectively and accurately segment data based on certain attributes or to combine relevant information, such as churn predictions, into the revenue forecasts, as well as data visualisation approaches will come to the forefront. This allows for the information to be accessed – in a relatively refined form – across the entire organisation.

In other words, I see the advances in mobile BI being very much complementary to the other movements we are seeing in BI and analytics as a whole – bringing easier and more operational access, through complementary methods, such as predictive and advanced analytics. This, in turn, provides more refined data in a form that is easy to utilise across the organisation to maximise effectiveness of — not only the BI and analytical tools — but the people using the information generated. The latter point, being able to flexibly but securely access the information when and where it is needed to minimise “information lag”, is certainly a strong value proposition and will help mobile BI gain its foothold.


Reflections from the IBM Business Partner Forum

Posted: May 31st, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Events | Tags: , , , , , | 2 Comments »

IBM is a long-standing partner of Comptel, and last week, I attended the IBM Business Partner Forum in sunny Cote d’Azur (while my peers were attending Management World 2011 in not-so-sunny Dublin).

There was still plenty of evidence of the film festival from the week before, e.g. tents, other temporary buildings, billboards, etc. Unfortunately, the red carpets had been rolled up, and the film stars had already left town, so I had to instead spend my time in Cannes with IBM and its partners. That said, I had numerous fruitful discussions with IT professionals from various industries (including finance, pharmaceutical, etc.).

During the first day, there were a number of really interesting presentations about IBM’s future visions and views on  industry trends. Most of the presentations touched on the subject of business analytics and how companies should anticipate customer needs by analysing data in real time instead of looking back to reports, thus ensuring a great customer experience.

Having said that, the event also looked back to IBM’s 100 years; the history was really inspiring and put many things into a new perspective. IBM has been a pioneer in many fields, and it shared some proof points on the following day.

"Think!" in La Gaude

More surprises were to come on day 2 when we visited the IBM Innovation Center in La Gaude. The first was being introduced to “Watson”, a recent star of U.S. TV-show “Jeopardy”. “Watson” is actually a computing system designed and built by IBM, and it rivals a human’s ability to answer questions posed in natural language with speed, accuracy and confidence. The same technology that powers Watson could soon power many useful solutions in healthcare, finance and telecoms.

After more talks about the importance of business intelligence, smart metering and smart cities, we got a hint of what really intelligent retailing might look like. In La Gaude, IBM staff demonstrated a display screen for shops that can detect which market segment you belong to and fit the marketing messaging according to it!

We look forward to having IBM as the gold sponsor of the Comptel User Group, which will be held in Espoo, Finland from 14 – 16 June.