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Under the terms of a collaboration revealed Thursday, the OmniSci analytics platform will now be a preloaded component in all HP Z8 workstations currently being tested as part of the Z8 Workstation Evaluation Program.
OmniSci is a business intelligence vendor founded in 2013 and based in San Francisco whose advanced analytics platform is geared toward data scientists and data analysts. Its tools are designed to process billions of rows of data almost instantaneously, giving data professionals the ability to quickly analyze huge data sets.
HP, meanwhile, the 2015 successor to the former Hewlett-Packard, is an IT vendor based in Palo Alto, Calif. specializing in workstations, printers and 3D printing systems, whose Z8 is designed for data scientists and other data professionals.
Under the agreement, the OmniSciDB SQL database engine and OmniSci Immerse data visualization tool will come as embedded tools in HP Z8 workstations starting Thursday with the goal of providing data scientists the ability to do spatial data analysis without needing to deploy in the cloud or on-premises servers.
"[The collaboration] benefits both organizations quite well," said Mike Leone, senior analyst at Enterprise Strategy Group. "HP gets a partner in OmniSci that is proven to deliver value to data scientists and advanced business analysts, while OmniSci gets the power of a multi-billion-dollar partner in HP with a massive budget and a global sales force."
James Yu, OmniSci's head of business development, said that the collaboration is an efficient way for OmniSci to deliver its platform.
Mike LeoneSenior analyst, Enterprise Strategy Group
"It's really a simpler, smaller way for customers to adopt OmniSci," he said. "Historically, it's deployed on servers that are a shared resource for many, and this is a dedicated resource for one person."
Yu added that OmniSci's partnership with HP -- whose net revenue totaled $14.6 billion in the first fiscal quarter of 2020 -- goes beyond just the distribution of software.
The two vendors are jointly selling and jointly marketing, Yu said. He noted that HP was a major sponsor of OmniSci's user conference last fall, and that OmniSci's and HP's sales teams are aligned in selling the joint hardware-software system.
The collaboration between OmniSci and HP, meanwhile, represents an attempt to appeal to hardcore data professionals at a time when many BI vendors are releasing easy-to-use products aimed at circumventing data scientists with tools infused with augmented intelligence and machine learning capabilities that automate tasks for citizen data scientists and other business users.
While the demand for data scientists far exceeds the current supply, making it necessary for business users to be able to do some data analysis, deep data exploration still requires the skills of data scientists.
"The point that sticks out to me is the idea of embracing the … power users," Leone said. "Why hinder the power users by centralizing and potentially congesting workflows? You want to better enable those users to explore faster without performance or accessibility guardrails or limitations."
Leone added that while the collaboration between OmniSci and HP isn't the first time an analytics vendor and OEM (original equipment manufacturer) vendor have agreed to embed a BI platform -- it could represent a growing trend. Dell's Precision workstations, for example, feature capabilities from chip and software vendor Nvidia.
Meanwhile, Yu noted that while OmniSci's collaboration with HP to preload its platform, OmniSci will gauge the success of the partnership and perhaps engage in similar partnerships with other OEM vendors.
"I believe this will start getting prioritized by the OEM vendors," Leone said. "For many organizations, asking IT to build the perfect scalable system to support more advanced analytics across the business is a losing proposition. If something goes wrong, it can impact everyone. By embedding OmniSci in Z8, power users get what they need when they need it."