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4/11/2006
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Business Objects Offers On-Demand Reports

The debut of Crystalreports.com marks the business intelligence software vendor's first real move into software as a service.

Business Objects this week said it has begun offering its Crystal Reports reporting software on a hosted basis, marking the vendor’s first real software-as-a-service offering. Business Objects is particularly targeting the service toward small and midsized companies that traditionally rely on faxes, E-mail, and PDFs to transmit and share reports.

Businesses can create reports and upload them to the Crystalreports.com site to make them available to managers, employees, and even users outside the company. The online reports provide the same drill-down and report navigation capabilities as Crystal Reports software. Report authors create a list of users authorized to see the reports, and users on the list are automatically notified by E-mail when a new or updated report is available.

IDC predicts that worldwide spending for software-as-a-service will grow 21% a year and reach $10.7 billion by 2009.

A basic service level offering is supplied free as part of Crystal Reports. The premium-level service is offered for a monthly per-user subscription fee ($20 on an introductory basis). Both are available now in North America.

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