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What's in a name? Watson in the name!

April 22, 2021

Starting 1 April 2021, "with Watson" will be added to the name of the IBM Planning Analytics solution.

IBM® Planning Analytics with Watson will be the official product name represented on the IBM website, in the product login and documentation, as well as in marketing collateral. However, IBM TM1® text will be maintained in descriptions of planning analytics' capabilities, differentiators and benefits.


What is the "Watson" in Planning Analytics with Watson?

The cognitive help feature within Planning Analytics with Watson is the help system used in IBM Planning Analytics Workspace (Cloud). This feature uses machine learning and natural language processing to drive clients towards better content that is more tailored to the user's needs. As clients interact with the help system, the system creates a content profile of the content they are viewing and what they are searching for.


Branding benefits of the name

  • Utilize the IBM Watson® brand, a leader in the technology and enterprise space, to gain a competitive advantage
  • AI and predictive as differentiators to how we approach planning
  • Amplify the reach of planning analytics to our target audience and analysts through Watson marketing activities


What do we think?

We are pleased to note that the name TM1 remains with the product. The Planning analytics product has evolved significantly from the early days of Applix. We had initial apprehension when IBM acquiring TM1 via Cognos acquisition (IBM acquired Cognos in January 2008 for USD $4.9 Billion). We naturally assumed that this little gem of a product would be lost in the vast portfolio of IBM software.

However, it's quite pleasing to see TM1 thrive under IBM. It received significant R&D funding and made TM1 into an enterprise planning tool. We saw the development of the workspace, which brought in the modern dashboard and reporting features. Move to Pax saw us get an even better excel interface and, just lately, the workspace feature that manages a complex enterprise workflow.

The biggest gamechanger was making Planning Analytics available as a Software as a Service (you can still get it as an on-premise solution). This meant that the time to deploy was reduced to a couple of days. There is no cost to the business in maintaining the application in doing any patches and upgrades. Gone are the days of IT and Finance at loggerheads over the application. The stability and speed of Planning Analytics as a SaaS product has pleasantly surprised even us believers!

Adding Watson to the name is timely as AI-infused features around predictive forecasting is getting more prevalent. There is no doubt that IBM Planning Analytics with Watson is the most powerful AI-based Planning tool available. It's time to acknowledge the future of where we are going.

What do you think of the name change? Share with us your thoughts.