Gartner Magic Quadrant

2007 - 2021

Update: February 2021

This was a surprise hit on its first run so I updated the workbook with Gartner's 2021 results as soon as they were released. The surprise this year was ThoughtSpot falling out of the Leaders quadrant, leaving the three incumbents back at the top.

September 2020

This is like a business intelligence time machine: I collated 14 years of Gartner's annual Magic Quadrant and made this viz to help us all reminisce.

Each year Gartner tracks the industry's favourite tools on "ability to execute" and "completeness of vision". On average they've evaluated 20 tools each year, peaking at 27 in 2014 when the contest to establish BI's leading tools was most crowded.

In 2016 Microsoft (Power BI), Tableau Software and Qlik emerged as the established leaders. A brief status quo was then disrupted by ThoughtSpot who leapt into the spotlight in 2019.

I found it just as interesting to see who dropped out of the race. IBM, Oracle and SAP among many others have slipped into niche corporate grooves. And then there's the omissions: Where's Google Data Studio? Free and popular.

Making this visualisation

The irony that I made this with Tableau isn't lost on me but mostly that's because they have a public layer for showcasing work like this. It remains my go-to tool simply because it's public platform - a sales technique the other BI tools would do well to emulate.

There were no fancy tricks to gathering the data. I downloaded a back history of annual quadrants and used tracing paper and a pencil to harvest each product's co-ordinates on the grid.

The rest was a scatter plot, some circle packing and floated elements positioned over a fixed width background designed in Adobe Photoshop.