Transpara is a mobile BI vendor that’s that has worked to grow a strong presence in the field. For looking at key metrics and trends, there is a lot of functionality available.

Their main product is called Visual KPI. Not surprisingly, this technology is heavily focused on metrics, with alerts, charts, and graphs all based around it. Their products are readily deployed on nearly any mobile device, including iPads, iPhones, Blackberrys, and Android devices. This is a good move, as while Apple products continue to be popular, Android and other OS types will make inroads.

Their apps certainly can pack in quite a bit of functionality and data trending around a company’s metrics. Here’s some screenshots of the iPhone/iPod application:

You can fit in quite a few menu options, tabbing functionality, and settings and filters. Under the settings, you can have options for grouping and other organization type work. You can also set up paths similar to drilling, for example, down to NE Region. Some users and designers may argue that this is a little busy and overwhelming but the feature sets and options can be dialed back. The visualizations seem to be heavy on bar charts and trend graphs, which is fairly common on phone type devices.

Another interesting differentiation point is the fact that the back-end designer tool is based on Excel. In fact, it actually an add-in for the program, so this is a nice advantage vs. having a brand new interface. Along with this, they also have a web browser based version as well, so it gives some flexibility on the deployment.

I was impressed with the number and breadth of customers on their client list, including Eli Lilly and even Microsoft! Maybe they are getting some ideas on some mobile BI products of their own!

Right now, they require the KPI server to be installed locally. I think there would be an opportunity for a cloud based system for hosting the server data, just as a general trend toward hardware virtualization.

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