SAS is #1…In Plans to Discontinue Use

By Bob Muenchen

SAS Attrition Plot

(This article was first published on r4stats.com » R, and kindly contributed to R-bloggers)

I’ve been tracking The Popularity of Data Analysis Software for many years now, and a clear trend is the decline of the market share of the bigger analytics firms, notably SAS and SPSS. Many people have interpreted my comments as implying the decline in the revenue of those companies. But the fields involved in analytics (statistics, data mining, analytics, data science, etc.) have been exploding in popularity, so having a smaller slice of a much bigger pie still leaves billions in revenue for the big players.

Each year, the Gartner Group, “the world’s leading information technology research and advisory company”, collects data in a survey of the customers of 42 business intelligence firms. They recently released the data on the customers’ plans to discontinue use of their current software in one to three years. The results are shown in the figure below. Over 16% of the SAS Institute customers surveyed reported considering discontinuing their use of the software, the highest of any of the vendors shown. It will be interesting to see if this will actually lead to an eventual decline in revenue. Although I have helped quite a few organizations migrate from SAS to R, I would be surprised to see SAS Institute’s revenue decline. They offer excellent software and service which I still use, though not anywhere near as much as R.

The full Gartner report is available here.

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