The potential of business intelligence applications and operations in the cloud has been, to this point, “long on promise,” though changes to how business data is analyzed and accessed are rippling through enterprises from new on-demand capabilities and interest, according to a new report from Saugatuck Technology.

Saugatuck forecasts a big shift to more business intelligence in the cloud in the near future. According to survey results in the report, enterprise preferences for BI will drastically transition from on-premise to some variation of cloud deployment or as-a-service over the next four years. Purely on-premise business software is the preferred path for 50 percent of respondents, though that number dips to 18 percent for 2015 and lower still to 13 percent by 2016, according to Saugatuck’s figures. At the same time, approximately 40-to-60 percent of enterprises will opt for a hybrid on-premise and in the cloud application path from 2014 to 2016. And wholly cloud-based solutions are in the plans for about 10 percent of enterprises as of next year, but that expectation rises to 39 percent by 2016, according to Saugatuck.

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