Love is in the air this valentines weekend, as Qlik and Vizubi join forces. Today it was announced that NPrinting will be moving into the Qlik fold, as Qlik have announced the purchase of Vizubi.
One of the features that QlikView has always been a bit lacking in is the production of hard copy or scheduled reports, this is something we have blogged about in the past. The report editor looks the same in 11.2 as it did when I first picked up QlikView at version 8, and is just as awkward to use. Sense, on the other hand, made no effort to cater for this need.
Qlik has seemed to have had a strategy of providing hooks into their applications to allow for inspired third party apps, evidenced by the development of Extensions and the extensive API. This allowed them to focus on their core products and make them truly world beating. This has provided an environment where other vendors have been able to flourish and create applications that compliment QlikView, whilst drawing on its core power and flexibility. NPrinting is a perfect example of such as tool.
With this acquisition, following on from previous purchases of QlikView Workbench, Expressor and most recently Data Market it would appear that they are bringing some functionality back in house, but at the same time encouraging external innovation through their Qlik Branch and Qlik Market offerings.
As integrators and resellers for NPrinting over the last couple of years we have seen how it has helped our clients take information from QlikView and allow users without any QlikView skills to arrange that information into a template to distribute to distribute. This can be to users who only require static output in a PDF, those who need to further manipulate data in Excel or those who need it to arrive in a timely fashion into their in-box. As a tool it allows more flexibility and extendibility than QlikView alone, as demonstrated by our article and video on using NPrinting alongside Google Drive to make reports available to additional users.
This ability to push data in a format that is flexible (although not dynamic, like Qlik products) out to a large number of individuals without incurring additional Qlik licence costs makes it appear an uncomfortable bedfellow for Qlik. Massive savings in licences can be made by getting data to users via static reports, rather than granting them a Document CAL. Perhaps this is a further sign (following on from the completely free Sense Dekstop) that Qlik are opening up to the idea that market pervasiveness is as important as revenue in the now – something Tableau has long seemed to appreciate. Hopefully the licencing model for NPrinting will remain similar in the new world as it was before.
Having seen an early demo of NPrinting Newstand and the OnDemand functionality in NPrinting it should slot well into the modern Qlik releases, with Sense being fully browser based for development and admin, and the thought of the development teams pulling together on future releases is an exciting one.
Today’s announcement is, I believe, a positive move for both products – with Qlik products soon to have a more integrated reporting functionality and NPrinting (I assume) benefiting from an injection of development from the Qlik team.
It is early days, as the announcement has only just been made, but we will be keeping a close eye on how things develop. We will be sure to put more on our blog as we find it out.
The full announcement can be found on the Qlik website here:
Please feel free to comment below if you have any thoughts on this acquisition.