IDC, one of the "big three" software analyst firms has just published a report on CEP - Complex Event Processing Opportunity Analysis and Assessment of Key Products (more information about it is available here).
The report has a few major themes. Firstly, IDC look at the market for CEP applications. They state that trading applications in capital markets makes up the biggest single CEP application segment but go on to note that it represents only a minority of CEP applications. Other areas mentioned where CEP is in production are risk analysis, fraud identification and general transaction & business process monitoring in a range of different industries. Transportation and logistics is cited as one particular industry where CEP is gaining significant traction. IDC also mention use cases in a whole range of different verticals where deployments of CEP are live: healthcare, government, leisure, banking, media and manufacturing; this breadth of application areas is excellent validation that CEP is not a technology only useful within the capital markets trading arena.
In terms of market growth IDC believe CEP will continue to grow strongly, despite the general market downturn. In their view, one which I share, the increased focus on risk management and on running existing operations more effectively and efficiently will actually further stimulate the CEP market. IDC estimate that CEP is the biggest growing segment of, what in their categorisation is, the middleware market.
Thirdly, from a parochial Progress point of view, here's the best bit: as well as looking at the CEP market and where CEP is being used, IDC also did a vendor evaluation using various criteria covering correlation sophistication, integration with event sources, the presentation of results and control of event processing scenarios by business users etc. All the usual suspect vendors participated. I am very pleased to say that Apama came top which, of course, is very gratifying.
My final point is that what's most important here is not the views of any one analyst firm, but that the publishing of such a report validates that CEP is becoming more important to end-users. Analyst firms are driven by end-users and thus the fact that an increasing number of analyst firms are investing in conducting CEP research demonstrates that they believe there's an end-user market for it. And end-users are the most important people around.
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