IBM releases Watson Analytics beta for businesses

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IBM releases Watson Analytics beta for businesses

Features natural language queries.

IBM today released a trial version of its cloud-based Watson Analytics tool for business decision making support, promising ease of use without scripting as well as natural language query support.

Watson Analytics can import data from sources such as spreadsheets,, Google Docs, Oracle databases, online storage services, and IBM's own SPSS and Cognos.

Once the data is ingested into Watson Analytics, the service is able to start making connections between the different sources and visualise the information as well as respond to natural language queries about it.

The data can be displayed in variety of formats from infographics to interactive dashboards.

IBM calls the new Watson service "predictive analytics for everyone", claiming no special skills are required to utilise it.

Watson Analytics can also automatically clean up and improve data sets, IBM said, instead of users having to manually prepare the information before ingestion.

Pricing for Watson Analytics - which is being launched in beta - is yet to be decided. IBM said the product would be offered through its Cloud Marketplace, with the service being hosted on Softlayer in a variety of freemium and premium packages that will be available later this year.

The Analytics service is accompanied by Watson Explorer, which is aimed at uncovering and sharing data driven insights for enterprise users, and Discovery Adviser, which navigates and searches research content.

IBM said earlier this year that it is spending around a billion dollars on building the Watson enterprise analytics platform.

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