Enterprise search vendors have become more risk averse, spending much of the past year stabilising their offerings and digesting acquisitions, according to research from analyst firm CMS Watch released today.
The firm's updated Search & Information Access Report 2009 argued that search buyers had faced rapid change in the past, such as with Microsoft's acquisition of Fast, but that the industry is now more stable.
Few vendors have made major new releases in the past six months, concentrating instead on marketing efforts, and improving and refining existing products, the report said.
CMS Watch also released a new version of its Cross-Check chart showing that, although there are still a significant number of competing players in the market, there are also many easy-to-install solutions available.
"As part of our Cross-Check analysis, we noted that enterprise search vendors have spent much of the past year digesting acquisitions and stabilising their offerings," wrote CMS Watch analyst Theresa Regli in a blog post.
"It is perhaps a sign of the times that vendors are debuting fewer new features, and focused more on stabilising their current offering, selling smarter, and keeping customers happy."
Charlie Hull, chief executive of enterprise search vendor Lemur Consulting said that it was only natural after a period of acquisition that there would be a period of integration and a focus on stability.
"However if vendors are innovating less, then they'll quickly be caught up," he added. "Tomorrow's key search technology may well be something no-one has heard of yet."
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