AWS launches preview of QuickSight Q, its latest play for the BI market

Q is a natural language query tool that functions as a companion feature for AWS' QuickSight BI cloud service.

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Amazon Web Services is adding to its portfolio of business intelligence (BI) services with the preview launch of Amazon QuickSight Q, a natural language query tool that functions as a companion feature for its QuickSight cloud service. 

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With QuickSight Q, users can search databases using everyday, natural language and receive an response in seconds, said AWS CEO Andy Jassy during his keynote at the company's annual re:Invent developer conference. 

Using machine learning and natural language processing, trained over multiple data points and business areas, Q is able to extract business terms (such as revenue, growth, allocation, etc.) and intent from a user's question, surface the related data from the source, and return the answer in the form of numbers and graphs.

"We will provide natural language to provide what we think the key learning is," said Jassy. "I don't like that our users have to know which databases to access or where data is stored. I want them to be able to type into a search bar and get the answer to a natural language question."

Rolled out in 2016, Amazon QuickSight challenges traditional BI tools provided by Qlik and Tableau.

The service is designed to allow employees, regardless of technical skill, derive business information from data. The service provides graphical tools that allow users to more easily build data visualizations, charts, graphs, and tables from data that can be pulled from various AWS and third-party sources. 

AWS said QuickSight Q is available in preview for US East (N. Virginia), US West (Oregon), US East (Ohio) and Europe (Ireland).