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ThoughtSpot expands cloud capabilities with ThoughtSpot One

ThoughtSpot One, a new tool from analytics vendor ThoughtSpot, enhances the natural language search and data sharing capabilities of the SaaS version of the vendor's platform.

ThoughtSpot on Wednesday unveiled ThoughtSpot One, a new tool built for the cloud that's designed to enable users to easily search and share their data.

ThoughtSpot, a BI and analytics vendor founded in 2012 and based in Sunnyvale, Calif., built a strong on-premises customer base after emerging from stealth in 2015. In September, however, the vendor signaled a shift in strategy with the release of ThoughtSpot Cloud, and while it will continue to develop its enterprise platform and serve its on-premises customers, the cloud will now be its primary product development focus.

ThoughtSpot One, which ThoughtSpot revealed during Beyond.2020, the vendor's virtual user conference, is the first product the vendor has built since the release of ThoughtSpot Cloud.

The tool was inspired by social media platforms such as TikTok and Instagram, which enable users to easily search and share content. It was also built on the assumption that most analytics questions asked by business users have already been explored and answered by others within their organization.

Using ThoughtSpot One, users can do a Google-like search using natural language processing to find analytics content such as reports and dashboards already created by others within their organizations, then modify the content as needed and share it with others, including the original author of the content. And if there is no existing content related to their search, they can use ThoughtSpot One to create their own original content.

"This a brand-new experience for our growing number of cloud users," Sean Zinsmeister, vice president of product marketing at ThoughtSpot, said prior to the conference.

He added that because ThoughtSpot has always focused on search, it was able to respond to feedback from customers to develop ThoughtSpot One.

An employee's work with data is displayed in the feed of ThoughtSpot One.
A ThoughtSpot One workspace displays an employee's work with their organization's data.

"Customers tell us, 'These are the search experiences we want,' and what we found is that a lot of the companies we talk to want to make it easy for anybody [in their organization] to discover content," Zinsmeister said. "They call it monetizing their data. They have this stuff that's been created and they're not making use of it."

Among the main features of ThoughtSpot One is Search Answers, which enables users to conduct a natural language search of existing content created by others in their organization.

This a brand-new experience for our growing number of cloud users.
Sean ZinsmeisterVice president of product marketing, ThoughtSpot

In addition to Search Answers, ThoughtSpot One includes:

  • a personalized onboarding experience that mimics those of streaming music services like Spotify and Apple Music and social media platforms like Twitter, and trains users how to use ThoughtSpot One while at the same time learning their preferences;
  • a new homepage and trending feed similar to Twitter that uses social graph database capabilities to tailor content to each individual user and help users find content that might be of interest based what similar users are working with;
  • a feature called SpotIQ that enables users to select specific key performance indicators (KPIs) to monitor, and if the KPIs change, receive not only alerts but also explanations about why the change occurred; and
  • both ThoughtSpot Modeling Language (TML) and SpotApp Templates. TML is a new modeling language that enables data analysts to define and manage data models with workflows built for the cloud, including sharing and reusing those models within their organization. SpotApps, meanwhile, are application templates built using TML that can be moved between data environments and deployed quickly.

"The aspect I like the most is the idea of using a social graph and insight ranking throughout an organization," said Mike Leone, senior analyst at Enterprise Strategy Group (ESG). "What better way to ramp up organizational usage than simplifying access to the right results? It helps the data analytics rock stars within organizations to not get held back and better enable self-service for the non-experts."

Regarding ThoughtSpot's new emphasis on the cloud, Leone added that he thinks it's the right move.

"I think it was an essential move the company needed to make to continue adding value to their customers," he said. "Fact of the matter is that [ESG research shows] 47% of organizations view the cloud as very important if not critical to success when it comes to satisfying goals of their data analytics strategy. Simply put, making it available in the cloud aligns with customer preferences going forward."

While ThoughtSpot One is built for the cloud and now available to the vendor's cloud customers, many of its capabilities will soon be available to ThoughtSpot's on-premises customers as well with ThoughtSpot 7, scheduled for release in early 2021, according to Zinsmeister. ThoughtSpot 6 was introduced at Beyond 2019 in October of that year, and has been updated twice.

"If you're an on-premises customer or you're hosting in a different way, we are going to make these capabilities available to you," Zinsmeister aid. "But the beauty of the cloud is this is a result of us being able to innovate really fast. We were able to hear the feedback from the customers and develop."

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