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GigaOm Key Criteria for Evaluating Streaming Data Platformsv4.0

An Evaluation Guide for Technology Decision-Makers

Table of Contents

  1. Executive Summary
  2. Streaming Data Platforms Sector Brief
  3. Decision Criteria Analysis
  4. Analyst’s Outlook
  5. About Andrew Brust

1. Executive Summary

Streaming data platforms ingest, process, transform, analyze, and render action from streaming data in real time. The best tools can do so before data is written to a database, to support use cases requiring low latency. This technology has become imperative because of the influx of sensor data, data generated from the internet, and data continually produced by applications across a host of industry verticals, including customer-facing ones.

These developments are responsible for the pace of business—and the data management requisites for facilitating it—accelerating to real-time processing that completely outclasses time-consuming, traditional batch processing. Consequently, streaming data platforms are indispensable to an array of user segments, including business end users (such as stock traders, portfolio managers, and health care practitioners), IT and operations personnel monitoring telemetry data and other data types, and data scientists building and refining machine learning (ML) models.

Business Imperative
Organizations need streaming data platforms because the older batch methods of ingesting, transforming, and analyzing data were designed for historic data in conventional business intelligence use cases. Accomplished vendors in this space couple the established extract, transform, load (ETL), extract, load, transform (ELT), and change data capture (CDC) paradigms with streaming data constructs designed to reduce the time necessary to derive meaningful action from the latest data available for a specific use case. Doing so allows organizations to enrich their streaming data intelligence with historic data to fully understand the latest developments impacting a use case—such as a customer’s most recent behavior affecting a real-time, personalized offer—along with appropriate historical data impacting that same case.

The most significant benefit of adoption is the increased responsiveness to data-driven events that streaming data platforms directly support. This capability manifests itself in predictive analytics, applications of artificial intelligence (AI) including generative AI, and enhanced customer interactions. The urgency surrounding adoption pertains to the inexorable shift to real time, which is frequently necessary to either supersede or supplement batch processing, for continued capitalization of data-driven investments. The impact of streaming data processing, and its potential to act on data in the moment, is considerable for nearly every use case supported by streaming data, from application observability to the internet of things (IoT) and data science.

Sector Adoption Score
To help executives and decision-makers assess the potential impact and value of a streaming data platform deployment to the business, this GigaOm Key Criteria report provides a structured assessment of the sector across five factors: benefit, maturity, urgency, impact, and effort. By scoring each factor based on how strongly it compels or deters adoption of a streaming data platform, we provide an overall Sector Adoption Score (Figure 1) of 4.8 out of 5, with 5 indicating the strongest possible recommendation to adopt. This indicates that a streaming data platform is a credible candidate for deployment and worthy of thoughtful consideration.

The factors contributing to the Sector Adoption Score for streaming data platforms are explained in more detail in the Sector Brief section that follows.

Key Criteria for Evaluating Streaming Data Platforms

Sector Adoption Score







Figure 1. Sector Adoption Score for Streaming Data Platforms

This is the fourth year that GigaOm has reported on the streaming data platform space in the context of our Key Criteria and Radar reports. This report builds on our previous analysis and considers how the market has evolved over the last year.

This GigaOm Key Criteria report highlights the capabilities (table stakes, key features, and emerging features) and nonfunctional requirements (business criteria) for selecting an effective streaming data platform. The companion GigaOm Radar report identifies vendors and products that excel in those decision criteria. Together, these reports provide an overview of the market, identify leading streaming data platforms, and help decision-makers evaluate these solutions so they can make a more informed investment decision.


The GigaOm Key Criteria report provides a detailed decision framework for IT and executive leadership assessing enterprise technologies. Each report defines relevant functional and nonfunctional aspects of solutions in a sector. The Key Criteria report informs the GigaOm Radar report, which provides a forward-looking assessment of vendor solutions in the sector.