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Confluent Recognized as a Leader in The Forrester Wave:™ Streaming Data Platforms, Q4 2023

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Data streaming platforms are becoming increasingly important in today’s fast-paced world. 

Be it a traditional retail giant such as Walmart, that monitors inventory levels to ensure stores never run out of items, or a new-age, innovative technology company such as 10x Banking, that builds out-of-the-box banking solutions for traditional retail banks, data streaming platforms are at the center, powering these workflows. Data streaming platforms connect all your applications, systems, and teams—across geographies and deployments—with a shared view of the most up-to-date, real-time data.

Forrester has named Confluent a leader in The Forrester Wave™: Streaming Data Platforms, Q4 2023. This evaluative report on streaming data platforms reflects growing investments, interest, and innovation in the category. What was once a nice-to-have, is now indispensable table stakes for any organization to operate in real time.

Confluent is at the heart of the data streaming revolution. We were built by the founders of Apache Kafka®, today’s de facto standard and most successful open source technology for data streaming, used by over 75% of the Fortune 500. Confluent reinvented Kafka to build a cloud-native, complete data streaming platform, available everywhere and for every use case. Today, Confluent is used by over 4,800+ customers across every industry, all over the world.

“Confluent’s key strength lies in its offering of cloud native versions of Kafka that also adds developer tools to make creating streaming applications easier to develop and manage,” states The Forrester Wave™: Streaming Data Platforms, Q4 2023. The report also states, “Confluent is a good fit for customers who want a solution based on Apache Kafka, is cloud portable, and provides ample capabilities for both streaming analytics and processing.”

The report states, “Confluent is a streaming force to be reckoned with.” Confluent received the highest score in the Strategy category. The company also scored the highest score possible in10 of the 21 criteria that vendors were evaluated on, including:

  • Current offering: connections, movement, management, and fault-tolerance

  • Strategy: vision, innovation, roadmap, partner ecosystem, community 

  • Market presence: revenue

A New Paradigm: Data Streaming Platforms

Data streaming platforms are the key to turning your data mess of complex, batch-oriented, custom code integrations into data value. This isn’t just bolting on more tech or adding a “streaming” feature to an existing data warehouse. A data streaming platform is a software platform that streams, connects, processes, and governs all your data, and makes it available wherever it’s needed, however it’s needed, in real-time. It helps transform your data mess of silos and batch systems into a system of data in motion, so you can create real-time experiences faster, safer, and more cost-effectively than ever. 

“Enterprises continue to invest in data lakes to analyze data from multiple sources, train machine learning models, and to support some operational use cases. But data lakes are antithetical to a real-time enterprise — and that’s where streaming data platforms not only promise to fill the gap but will likely also evolve to take workloads from data lakes and data warehouses,” writes Mike Gualtieri in The Streaming Data Platforms Landscape, Q3, 2023

How does it do it? A data streaming platform helps connect and unlock all your enterprise data from source systems—wherever they reside—and serve it as continuously streamed, processed, and governed data products. These real-time data products are instantly valuable, trustworthy, and reusable, and they ensure your data is used in a consistent manner everywhere it’s needed.

This approach unleashes a virtuous cycle of innovation, with each new data product increasing the value of the others and enabling more reuse across the organization. It changes your focus from “Where is my data, and is it accurate?” to “What is my data, and how do I get value from it immediately?”  Data streaming platforms connect all your applications, systems, and teams with a shared view of the most up-to-date, real-time data.

The Confluent Advantage: The World’s Leading Data Streaming Platform

Confluent is the only data streaming platform that delivers on all four fundamental principles to a successful streaming service - to stream, connect, process, and govern data. It’s why we say Confluent is the world’s leading data streaming platform.

Stream:  Streaming is at the heart of our platform. We transformed Kafka with Kora engine, our Apache Kafka engine built for the cloud. Kora abstracts all the operational challenges of self-managing Kafka and delivers a fully managed, cost-effective Kafka service. Kora powers Confluent Cloud to support streaming across 30,000+ clusters around the globe. Kora is elastic, resilient, cost-efficient, and runs at low latencies.

Connect: Our connector ecosystem enables customers to connect to any data source and sink—wherever they reside—including databases, message queues, cloud services, and more! We support over 120+ pre-built connectors and 70+ fully managed connectors. We’ll also manage your custom connectors to homegrown systems and apps.

Process: Stream processing combines multiple data streams and shapes them on the fly to drive greater data reuse. Confluent supports SQL-based stream processing and recently announced the public preview of Apache Flink® on Confluent Cloud. Flink has emerged as the de facto stream processing standard, and Confluent has gone beyond "cloud-hosted" Flink to build a truly cloud-native, serverless stream processing service.

Govern: We offer the only fully managed governance suite for data in motion. Stream Governance allows you to catalog streams as data products—so you can apply data quality controls, compliance standards, and maintain visibility into usage while still making streams available for anyone in your organization to discover and consume. Furthermore, Confluent offers built-in security tools, including granular RBAC, cloud audit logs, private networking capabilities, data encryption at rest and in transit, and much more.

With these four principles, we take data from your data mess and turn it into reusable, high quality data products. These data products can then be shared and used to build custom applications that deliver real-time experiences for customers and other data systems.

A Thank You to Our Customers, Partners, and Community

We’re excited to share this recognition with our customers, our broad partner ecosystem, and the open-source community of developers. Without your feedback, input, and contributions, we couldn’t deliver the value we do today. Thank you!

  • Kevin Balaji is a product marketer at Confluent. Looking to share the latest and greatest about our product and solutions!

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