PowerCenter Express is now available to the general public on Informatica’s Marketplace. The response from the first group of users—InformaticaWorld attendees who were given early access—has been incredibly positive. In fact, 95% of those users would recommend PowerCenter Express to a friend.
Despite being free, PowerCenter Express is incredibly feature-rich—this is no dumbed-down version of PowerCenter, rather it is PowerCenter tailored to entry-level volumes and workloads. A survey of users shows they plan to push PowerCenter Express up to the limits of that tailoring. Not surprisingly, more than 80% plan on using the database connectors. Somewhat more surprisingly, well more than a third plan to use the social media connectors—showing that this data is no longer the province of the most technically advanced companies, but a business requirement. A full 50% plan to use the in-line data profiling, and 90% of those will be doing sophisticated rule-based profiling. Nearly two-thirds of those surveyed plan on using workflows to orchestrate complex, multi-step transformations. More than a half of users plan to avail themselves of the mid-stream data viewer, a cool technology that lets users see what happens to data during each transformation, before deploying.
PowerCenter Express is aimed at a new user segment, departmental IT organizations and small to medium-sized organizations. Because of this, and the greater ease of access to PowerCenter Express, we knew people would find different uses for it than they have for PowerCenter Enterprise editions. While we had some ideas for how they might choose to use it, it’s been really exciting to hear how they actually are using it. The most common use cases we’ve heard thus far are:
- Small projects moving systems/applications data to databases
- Initial projects that they plan to migrate to PowerCenter Enterprise once critical mass is achieved
- For training purposes—both to keep their own skills sharp, and for others, especially non-ETL developers
- To empower technical business analysts to do the groundwork for basic interfaces
- For proof-of-concepts to pilot cool ideas that may or may not make it into production in the enterprise
We have no doubt this list will grow, and we look forward to hearing from you how you are using it. In the meantime, it’s exciting to see that the PowerCenter Express promise—start now, start small, scale fast—is being realized. It’s also very gratifying to see that these users have so easily and intuitively grasped the promise of Vibe, the promise to map once, and deploy anywhere. It is that power and promise that is enabling them to move the mappings they create in PowerCenter Express directly to PowerCenter Enterpise, or to the Informatica Cloud. While we love that people get the concept of Vibe, what we love most is that people aren’t wasting time re-doing their work as their deployment choices change.
As always, let me know your thoughts.