If cloud is going to be the dominant IT trend for the immediate and foreseeable future – along with virtualization, mobility, software-defined-everything, Internet of Everything, Big Data, analytics, consumerization, Shadow IT, etc. – then integrating it with all the other pieces will be the dominant IT focus for the immediate and foreseeable future. That’s where Informatica Cloud Spring 2014, a “game-changing” cloud integration platform will play a significant role, said Ajay Gandhi, VP of Product Marketing, Informatica Cloud.
“This is one of the most significant releases for cloud and Informatica in years,” he said. We have the industry-leading experience from on-premise. and we’re taking our core assets and core heritage to the cloud and then building upon it. “Our foot is on the gas… to be the leader in cloud as we are in on premise…”.
No surprise about Informatica’s cloud ambitions. Outpacing overall IT spending growth 5X this year (25% versus 5%), cloud spending is expected to surpass $100 billion this year to over , according to IDC. By 2016 it will become the bulk of new IT spend, as private cloud begins to give way to hybrid cloud, according to Gartner, and nearly half of large enterprises will have hybrid cloud deployments by the end of 2017.
Powered by the Informatica Vibe Virtual Data Machine, the company’s Integration Platform-as-a-Service (iPaaS) solution increases integration agility and speeds projects to market with Vibe’s design once, deploy anywhere – cloud or on-premise – capabilities. Cloud Spring 2014 also introduces Informatica Cloud Designer, which provides self-service integration design capabilities directly in the cloud, making it easier for business analysts, SaaS application administrators and other LOB users to collaborate with each other and with IT to speed to market new applications and data for the business.
Customers got a sneak peak at Cloud Spring in late January with the pre-release Version 1. The production version was released to customers two weeks ago.
The ability for business users to quickly change a parameter and generate new data, without having to go to IT, is a game-changer, said Gandhi. “That is huge and nobody else in the industry can do that.”
Also new are advances to the concept of real-time hybrid app integration, stated Informatica. This means that real-time cloud-to-cloud data integrations (e.g. Salesforce CRM to NetSuite) are processed in the cloud, but real-time cloud to on-premise integrations (e.g.: Salesforce CRM to SAP) can be processed both in the cloud or on-premise, depending on customer preference and on data privacy and regulatory requirements.
In its review of its SaaS predecessor, Cloud Winter 2014, released in November, Ovum called it a major step forward that (rightly) recognizes that integration across hybrid cloud spans data, services, and processes. Informatica continues to present a clear, disciplined, and comprehensive platform-driven roadmap approach.
In February the company rolled out Informatica 9.6, the latest version of its on-premise data integration platform. The most significant enhancements are a consolidation of the 10 options down to 4 for the three editions (Standard, Advanced, and Premium), and an up to 5X faster development process.
While on-premise is updated on a 12-18-month cycle, cloud moves to a faster beat, with a 90-day upgrade cadence, said Gandhi. Vibe, which is shared across both platforms, is the glue that holds them together.
Informatica was positioned in the leader’s quadrant of Gartner’s January 2014 Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Integration Platform-as-a-Service (iPaaS) report, based on ability to execute and completeness of vision. According to the analysts, the iPaaS market is poised to dramatically grow over the next five years, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of almost 30% between 2012 and 2017.
Bringing all the disparate pieces together, as well as being able to work with a variety of analytics solutions, including SAP’s Hana in-memory database, Amazon’s Redshift data warehousing service, and Qlik and Tableau’s analytics/data visualization software, raises the bar for Informatica’s competitors. Whereas data integration software rivals as IBM, Oracle, and Teradata are motivated to cross-sell their databases and business intelligence software, Informatica has no such agenda, said CEO Sohaib Abbasi in a recent interview. “We’re viewed as the Switzerland of data integration.”
Under The Hood
Available now, Informatica Cloud Spring 2014 cloud integration platform enables both line-of-business (LOB) SaaS application users and IT users to quickly design integrations 100% in the cloud, while providing customers the choice of processing the data in the cloud or on-premise. The reusable integration designs are 100% portable across cloud, on-premise and hybrid landscapes.
Informatica Cloud Designer features:
-wizard-based point-and-click development that empowers LOB users to build and deploy even advanced integrations in a matter of minutes leveraging prebuilt templates; and,
-drag-and-drop visual design palette that lets IT developers easily create advanced data transformations, mappings and integration workflows.