Cognos and Business Objects (BO) were involved in a war of words this week, after Cognos unveiled its data mining product a week after its rival.
Cognos?s Scenario offering is based on Angoss International?s online analytical processing (Olap) engine, while BO?s is based on Isoft?s engine. Both suppliers claim their offering is the easier to use and the more integrated with their existing query and report writing tools. However, neither is likely to have much appeal outside the suppliers' own installed bases.
Charles Nicholls, Business Objects? marketing director, said: ?We have one integrated product, but Cognos has three. You need to perform three or four different executables to do a macro, whereas with ours, you only need one. Cognos is just trying to copy us, but we?ve made ours easy to use for business users, not analysts.?
But John Farley, Cognos? product marketing manager, retorted: ?They are remarkably similar products, but it comes down to implementation and Scenario is more integrated with our products than Business Objects? is. The original Angoss product is quite complex, but we?ve spent a lot of time making it easy to use.?
He claimed that Cognos various decision support tools are aimed at different types of users. The Impromptu query and reporting tool is for people who know the question they want to ask. The Powerplay multidimensional analysis software is targeted at those who are not sure of the question.
Meanwhile, Scenario is aimed at 'report analysts', who know the answer to their questions, but want to examine cause and effect relationships. ?It?s a different audience for us than rather than a new market,? Farley said.
Although the product is up to nine months late, Farley explained that Cognos had not wanted to rush out a second rate product onto the market.
Scenario is scheduled to ship next quarter, costing #700.
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