Gartner published a report of this title on January 16, 2014 where descriptions of different vendor offerings were provided. Besides IBM, the big players are SAP, Oracle, Microsoft and Teradata, but there are also a number of smaller vendors, such as Aerospike, Altibase, Kognito, PartStream and VoltDB.
Gartner considers In-Memory DBMS as one of the Top 10 technology trends impacting infrastructure in 2013 and beyond.
Gartner defines two types of IMDBMS:
- Operational IMDBMS for managing transactions with both relational and NoSQL data.
- Analytical IMDBMS include in-memory column-store DBMSs and in-memory MPP row-store-based technologies. It allows for processing without the need for prepared aggregates, summaries and cubes. It simplifies administration and is often combined with low-latency loading in the database to perform real-time analysis.
Furthermore, the promise of in-memory DBMSs is to enable hybrid transactional and analytical processing platform (HTAP) use cases without having to move the data from one to the other.
Under the section for IBM, it lists 3 products: solidDB, BLU Acceleration (on DB2) and Informix Warehouse Accelerator.
“Informix Warehouse Accelerator (IWA), released in March 2011, also leverages an in-memory, columnar data store to transparently accelerate analytical queries processed by Informix. It is a software appliance that is not tied to particular hardware. Subsequent releases of IWA since 2011 added support for clustering, and more recently, for accelerating transactional workloads including a Trickle-Feed feature that updates the transactional data for near real-time analysis”.
IWA is nearing its third anniversary at the end of March. I believe it is significant not only because of its product revenue success and customers gained across many industry sectors around the world, but also of its recognition by market research companies like Gartner and others. Judging from other vendor products published in this Gartner report, IWA is in good standing in comparison with a number of these products.
2013 was a good year for IWA. We are seeing adoption in Retail, Transportation, Health Care, Public Sector and Finance sectors, among others. We are also seeing "return" customers who are adding to their existing base. The underlying Intel x86 architecture is further expanding to accomodate more DRAM and more cores per socket, making the value proposition for IMDBMS even more attractive.
And as we embarked on 2014, we are reaching to enable an even higher variety of scenarios (and types of data) that solve real problems for our customers. Look for more blog entries on this topic in the coming months.