QlikView Competitor: InetSoft, Comparing Solutions


Qlik's portfolio of products closely matches what is offered in InetSoft's all-inclusive product in the areas of data visualization, dashboarding, reporting, analytics and data mashup. Below are the areas where InetSoft offers an advantage or notable difference in approach.

Visualization Design

InetSoft offers a blank canvas to completely customize visualization design, whereas Qlik offers fewer options for controlling look and feel. Qlik's visualization capabilities mainly focus on output types like charts and tables. InetSoft's capabilities are comparable and add more options with a free-form dashboard layout.

InetSoft includes a far richer input component selection such as a selection tree and calendars that allow on-the-fly data range comparisons. For an example of greater design options, the color palettes of data plotted in charts are limited. Data range coloring is limited to a couple of choices, whereas InetSoft permits any colors to be set as endpoints and the midrange is automatically generated.

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Data Modeling

Qlik's data modeling is simplistic, script-driven, and specific to each visualization. Only basic relationships can be created visually. InetSoft has a visual data modeling environment that enables the resolution of complex relationships among data entities with an easier-to-use interface. InetSoft's centralized data models are much more efficient than Qlik's approach which requires tedious recreation of models for various visualizations.

This layer allows for modeled and governed core data that can be shared by all developers, ad hoc designers and end users. Data model formally defines core data assets and relationships among them to ensure consistent data understanding and interpretation. Furthermore, models provide access control on data cell level that enables centralized data security controls.

Data Transformation and Manipulation

InetSoft's data transformation and manipulation layer is built on top of the generic data model as visual data worksheets. Data worksheets provide a flexible visual tool for data transformation and data mashup. The visual environment has the power to perform complex SQL-level steps without needing the coding expertise. Post-processing scripting further extends the data manipulation ability for JavaScript coding capable experts. This visual environment also provides a full library of Excel-like functions and more to create new measures that otherwise would have to be created in ETL or data warehouse processes.

Even though it is possible for a data worksheet to by-pass a data model and access core data directly, it is most often layered on top of data models. This combination allows mashup of well governed core data with user controlled data. This two layer architecture resolves the dilemma of data governance and agile data adaptability. Qlik lacks this two layer architecture, and its data manipulation capabilities, which require developers to write scripts in Qlik's proprietary language, are far more limited.

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Data Security

Qlik's data security, especially security on row level and column level, must be coded in data load script and is tied to a specific visualization. InetSoft's centralized data modeling environment has built-in virtual private models that enable data cell level security definable with a GUI that enforces security across all visualizations by user role, which is the logical way that data security is intended to be applied.

Data Size Issues

Qlik is constrained by reliance on in-memory architecture. RAM needs to be sized according to data to be analyzed, which can lead to either more expensive hardware required or database size limitations. InetSoft utilizes a hybrid architecture, maximizing the use of RAM and supplementing with disk-based cache.

Handling Big Data

Qlik runs outside of the big data environment, connecting to and transporting data to visualize it, which is very inefficient, duplicating hardware requirements and introducing significant latency. InetSoft installs inside a Spark cluster to take advantage of distributed processing where the data resides.

Machine Learning

Qlik does not support machine learning whereas InetSoft makes the library of models already created for Spark readily available for business users to run.

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Qlik runs only on Windows machines whereas InetSoft runs on any JVM-enabled machine.

Database Write-back

Qlik has no ability to write back data to a database source, while InetSoft has the capability built-in.

Paginated Reporting

Qlik only delivers static reports and integration via its Qlik hub cloud service which limits access. InetSoft's much more mature reporting capabilities include drilldown from a dashboard into dynamically generated paginated reports. Any paginated reports are also interactive and accessible via any browser-based device.

About InetSoft

Since 1996 InetSoft has been delivering easy, agile, and robust business intelligence software that makes it possible for organizations and solution providers of all sizes to deploy or embed full-featured business intelligence solutions. Application highlights include visually-compelling and interactive dashboards that ensure greater end-user adoption plus pixel-perfect report generation, scheduling, and bursting. InetSoft's patent pending Data Block™ technology enables productive reuse of queries and a unique capability for end-user defined data mashup.

This capability combined with efficient information access enabled by InetSoft's visual analysis technologies allows maximum self-service that benefits the average business user, the IT administrator, and the developer. InetSoft was rated #1 in Butler Analytics Business Analytics Yearbook, and InetSoft's BI solutions have been deployed at over 5,000 organizations worldwide, including 25% of Fortune 500 companies, spanning all types of industries.

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