Tableau vs. Spotfire - What do I need to know regarding pricing and usability?


I'm looking to hear opinions about Tableau vs. TIBCO Spotfire for a small business application. My concerns are regarding price and usability. What should I be considering?

ITCS user
1515 Answers

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I delighted to be hear to share knowledge and experiences; today collaboration knowledge is ultimate!

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Agree with the answers recommending Tableau.

What is not mentioned is the cost of the creation of the model/s you will be using. If you don't have the time or technical expertise to create your own models, you can expect to pay $6000 to $8000 US for model creation (this is the dashboard and other tabs that you will need).

I also think you need to look at QlikView. Tableau and QlikView are 1 and 2 respectively in the FEB 2014 Gartner Magic Quadrant.

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Top 5LeaderboardConsultant

I would prefer Tableau over Spotfire, mainly because of the features it offers and its general availability of talent to work on it in the current market. The TIBCO product is also good, and if you already have other TIBCO products which your team is working on, then go with it, as the team will
be more comfortable with it and allow you to get cost savings also for integrated products and support.

Usability wise, Tableau is being adopted by most organizations and in my projects also we have preferred Tableau over the interfaces provided by IBM
and Oracle (COGNOS & OBIEE).

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Other reference is explained by Andrei Pandre on data visiausation please find the details here: http://apandre.wordpress.com/tools/comparison/

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Please refer to the http://www.practicaldb.com/data-visualization-consulting/tableau-vs-spotfire/

If you need to discuss your Data Visualization, BI and Data Analytics needs in more details, please Contact Practical Computer Applications via email, phone: 617-527-4722×127 or Request For Information regarding our Database, Data Analytics or Data Visualization consulting services.

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Real User

Larry, no matter what reporting tools selected, they are all a serious
learning curve and substantial data foundation work. I think on balance
Tableau is the better choice for small businesses because of their support
and documentation. It's way better than Spotfire.

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Top 20Consultant

Put price aside until you know:

- who are the users?.......business types and if so, how many and

- what are they using today?..........you will be going through cultural adoption and the vendor that you pick has to make that change easy for everyone

- access to data - how many sources and what types?

- Time to benefit - if they are business users how important is time to benefit

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I cannot comment in Spotfire but we use Tableau rather extensively. Users love it, it is a powerful tool and can be implemented with less IT involvement than traditional BI tools but it's not cheap, and can be an overkill, depending on your requirements.

You mentioned small business, which seems to imply more price sensitivity, and perhaps less complicated requirements. I recommend you take a look at Microsoft latest BI tools, specifically Power Query and Power BI. They don't have all the bells and whistles of Tableau but they have a rich feature set and are tightly integrated into Excel. Importantly, anyone with an MS Office license can use Power Query at no extra cost. I believe you need Office 2010 or 2013 but not 100% sure about version compatibility.

author avatar
Real User

I think I addressed this in another reply, but...
For a 'small' business, the short answer is Tableau. Spotfire is a 'big'
tool with lots of options that are not worth the cost for a small business.
If you need more details let me know.

author avatar

Sort of depends on our friends’ use case ...

Different business sectors, business sizes, and the sophistication of the BI steward and the BI champion involved ( … hopefully they have designated these roles in the cases of the inquiring professionals noted in this thread) have a lot to do with the ease of deployment and cultural adoption of any BI solution, and its ultimate success in a business.

Hmmm …

Wonder why there’s no mention on the web generally of the comparative affordability of these solutions for businesses …

Similarly, we should ultimately be talking about how end user friendly these tools are in terms of actual end user experience.

From those perspectives, we’ve been learning about and beginning to get interested in Information Builders’ BI solution …

Might this online resource help our BI curious friend?


Check out the table on that site for comparative info on various BI tools.

CAUTION: This table may be somewhat biased towards Tableau! … but what on the net isn’t biased in one way or another?

From that same site:

Some balancing factors in support of QlikView (from that same site):
- QlikView is certainly Enterprise ready with multi-server configurations.
- QlikView in the cloud offered by partners (Rosslyn being a prime example).
- ETL and data integration is very strong in QlikView - though very script driven rather than UI.
- I have seen articles re: integration with R in QlikView.
- Storytelling quite natural in QlikView - with tabs and navigation buttons.
- To my mind implementation time is very rapid in QlikView.

The ability to make data publicly available without the need to license each client and at a sensible price point (without the use of NPrinting or similar to push HTML or images to a web server) is somewhere I would like to see QlikView catch up though.

Hope these web-referenced comments have been helpful.
In summary, in order to be truly helpful, we need to inquire:
1. What is the size of your business?
2. How big is your IT staff (or will you be managing this tool by yourself)?
3. Do you have a budget, and if so, generally what is the size of your budget/any financial limitations for potentially purchasing this BI solution?
4. What sector of business are you in (banking, government, education, non-profit, manufacturing, etc. – as there are a variety of BI tools that have specifically geared themselves to a given business sector … public sectors especially)?
5. Are you just getting started on your BI journey, and if not, where are you at on that journey?
6. Do you have an executive champion designated for your BI initiative?
7. Are you the BI Steward for your business, and if so, what is your experience with implementing BI solutions thus far during your career?
It’s important to know who we are trying to help with our professional input, and how sophisticated their business may be at this point in time in truly adopting BI as a functional leadership tool to assist in the business’s strategic decision making.

Hope that helps!

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Spotfire is expensive and has better statistical functionality than Tableau. Tableau is a better user interface and a slightly better graphing engine. If you're just looking for a BI tool, Looker (www.looker.com) is a very inexpensive yet flexible option.

Depending on what you're trying to do, Excel isn't a bad idea either for small businesses (hell even large and medium businesses use Excel)

author avatar
Real User

If you want usability VS best price, consider trying the Tableau solution (initially, the Desktop Free one to evaluate). This BI platform has an excellent and easy to use interface for all business users, also the Sense Me feature that shows what graphics is more appropriate to the data that you're using. But, TIBCO has a lot of good features too, but it's more appropriate for medium and big business use. So evaluate these platforms with their free trials and look what you really need to make your business decisions.

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I can give my opinion about Tableau: it is a good tool, user friendly, easy to use, with flexible dashboards. Could be used for small business application. Concerning the price, it is not expensive, could be bought as for desktop (1 user) or server (multiple users), but in the two cases it is not expensive.

I don’t have idea about TIBCO spotfire.


author avatar

Have you looked at Entrinsik Informer? With an intuitive user interface, ad-hoc reporting capabilities, and interactive dashboard visualizations, Informer enables users -- from IT folks to end users -- to access the data they need quickly, easily. With a unique, direct-to-datasource architecture, Informer is the easy choice, especially for small and mid size organizations. Take a look at http://www.entrinsik.com/informer#p-video.

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Real User

Sorry I cannot comment on Spotfire, just Tableau, and we are a medium to large business. Happy to share our experience path with Tableau should that help.

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