Business intelligence (BI) software provider MicroStrategy (NASDAQ: MSTR) has unveiled MicroStrategy 9.2, which offers a number of improvements and includes a major new feature called Visual Insight that lets users mine data without the need for IT assistance.
MicroStrategy says Visual Insight gives users a better way to analyze business data that is "simple, powerful and fast." Answers can be obtained in less than 30 minutes without assistance from information technology (IT) teams.
Visual Insight can access data from anywhere in companies, from data warehouses and applications to Excel spreadsheets. Users can create simple, multi-tabbed "insight dashboards" that offer many different views of a business issue. The interactive data visualizations can be saved and shared internally through a web interface, while MicroStrategy's data security architecture ensures that people only see the data they are allowed to see.
Ease-of-use and self-service business intelligence have been a goal of both customers and vendors even as BI offerings have grown in complexity. Panorama, QlikTech and Information Builders are other business intelligence vendors who have touted ease of use in recent releases.
"MicroStrategy 9.2 is focused on empowering business people to get answers to their questions faster than ever before," MicroStrategy COO Sanju Bansal said in statement. "Visual Insight and the other new features in our latest release dramatically speed data analysis and put the power of BI into the hands of business users."
Other enhancements in MicroStrategy 9.2 include greater use of in-memory analytics, allowing companies to avoid refreshing the entire in-memory data store in favor of simply updating the changed portions of data, and the ability to combine multidimensional data with relational data and retain full analytical capabilities. Also, BI dashboard support has been added for Google Chrome and Apple Safari browsers.