451 Research Report:
InterSystems Eyes Transactional and Analytical Workloads with IRIS Data Platform

InterSystems Eyes Transactional and Analytical Workloads with IRIS Data Platform

The company has launched the IRIS Data Platform, an all-in-one data management platform that enables both transactional and analytical processing capable of powering data-centric applications.

InterSystems recently announced the InterSystems IRIS Data Platform, the company’s latest offering that not only leverages its existing technology but also adds new functionality. The company is pitching InterSystems IRIS as a type of all-in-one platform that can specifically handle hybrid transactional and analytical workloads for data-centric applications. Moreover, for improved analytical capabilities, InterSystems is providing more than just BI, including the ability to run predictive models and machine learning.

The 451 Take

With InterSystems IRIS, the vendor is bringing together its existing technology innovations and adding new enhancements. For a company that has been around since the late 1970s, InterSystems is well qualified to deliver such a product given the longevity and maturity of some of its technology, particularly its object-oriented Caché database that sits at the core of InterSystems IRIS. Timing is also on the company’s side here because we have seen an uptick in organizations’ appetite for mixed-workload systems. With its loyal following, we would expect InterSystems to find success here, but the competition will certainly be stiff as vendors of NoSQL to relational to Hadoop-based systems are all eying this opportunity as well.


Coming up on its 40th anniversary, InterSystems has been a mainstay for some time in the healthcare industry, where it has built a loyal following. But as we have noted in previous coverage, the company has also made gains in other sectors such as financial services, retail and manufacturing. InterSystems has adopted a partner-led business model, which accounts for approximately 75% of its revenue. This partnership strategy may explain why the company may not share the same name recognition as some of its peers in the space, namely those in the NoSQL segment.

Regardless, InterSystems boasts impressive annual revenue of about $600m that, according to management, has been growing at a low-double-digit percentage for the past three years. The company operates in 80 countries worldwide and has approximately 1,500 employees.

InterSystems offers four products as part of its portfolio: TrakCare, HealthShare, Caché and Ensemble. At the core, however, is the company’s Caché offering, which has been its flagship product since 1997. Although Caché is technically classified as a non-relational object database, it does compete and share some characteristics with NoSQL databases.

While InterSystems will continue to offer and support its other products, its forward direction is with InterSystems IRIS, as it incorporates components of the company’s other offerings. However, additional functionality has also been added. The company refers to InterSystems IRIS as both multi-model as well as multi-workload. It’s multimodel in the sense that the platform can handle a variety of data types – object representations, relational and documents, for instance, effectively spanning both structured and unstructured data. For multi-workload, it can process transactional (OLTP) and analytical (OLAP) workloads.

At the core of the platform sits the Caché database that effectively serves as the persistent layer. And while InterSystems IRIS accepts different data types, all of the data is represented as a single master representation in what InterSystems calls its Globals data structure technology. The benefit, according to management, is greater performance when processing queries, for instance. The company highlights its strong data-durability capabilities in. As data is ingested into InterSystems IRIS, it lands on disk but also can be processed in memory.

Even though it’s the same database that InterSystems has been peddling for many years now, there are several enhancements. One is that the company has completely redone document support within the database. Another is the scaling. The platform can scale vertically as well as horizontally, and specifically, InterSystems points to its enhanced sharding capabilities.

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InterSystems Eyes Transactional and Analytical Workloads with IRIS Data Platform