Enterprise Reporting and Analytics Platform vs Data Visualization Tool

Unfortunately quite a lot of people have misunderstood or do not have an understanding of how these two; Enterprise Reporting and Analytics Platform (ERAP) and Data Visualization (DV) categories of tools are different and that it isn't right to compare a tool that belongs to one category with another tool that belongs to another category. I see similar questions in Quora.com all the time. And I recently read a short article in LinkedIn that compares Microstrategy (ERAP) with PowerBI. 

So, unable to resist myself from commenting I commented something like this

"Thanks XYZ for the article. In my humble opinion, as these two tools belong to two different categories the comparison isn't fully right. Microstrategy is an Enterprise Reporting and Analytics Platform (ERAP) whereas PowerBI is only a data visualization tool. Microstrategy can be compared with tools like SAP BO, IBM Cognos, etc as they belong to the same category. As you probably already know Microstrategy (Company) provides a free to use desktop based data discovery tool called Microstrategy Desktop (https://www.microstrategy.com/us/get-started/desktop). It would make more sense to compare PowerBI with Microstrategy Desktop. Also please see the comparison of Microstrategy Desktop with Tableau Desktop from the same link given above. "

Basically, the point I want to make is that we shouldn't be comparing ERAP with DV tools. There is no point in comparing tools like Tableau or PowerBI or some other chart creation tools with ERAP tools like Microstrategy, Cognos or Business Objects. ERAP tools provide a very long list of features for example 
  • Semantic layer (Business layer) and metadata driven reporting .
  • User and Role management.
  • Metadata repositories (operational metadata, usage statistics).
  • Development environment for multiple developers to co-develop.
  • Code promotion tool and tools for integrity checks.  
  • Data lineage and features for impact analysis. 
  • Various authentications mechanisms (for example LDAP).
  • Various types of reports with various options to deliver. 
  • Scheduling including event-triggered, report bursting, and parameterization.
  • + many more.


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