Kognitio has been named as one of the world's leading providers of enterprise data warehouse services, with the company rating particularly highly for the quality of the experience it provides to its users.

This is among the findings of Information Difference's Data Warehouse Landscape for the fourth quarter of 2013, which assessed the relative strengths of the industry's top suppliers. Kognitio was especially praised for the performance of its technology, where it was placed among the top three suppliers.

This measure is calculated from a weighted set of scores based on analysts' impressions of the technology, the maturity and breadth of the solutions and how happy customers are with the solutions they receive. Kognitio rated particularly well on the latter criteria, ranking number one overall for customer satisfaction.

What this may illustrate is that Kognitio's focus on delivering the highest levels of service is paying off, as the company now has a set of fiercely loyal users that are making the most of the technology and greatly appreciate the additional capabilities it provides to their operations.

This is something that will become increasingly important in 2014 and beyond, as Information Difference noted the industry is currently facing a range of new challenges. Central to this will be the expanding volume of data organizations have to deal with. A survey by the analyst firm in 2012 revealed most were experiencing annual data growth of between 25 and 50 percent.

"In 2003 the largest data warehouse in the world was 30 TB in size, yet there are many examples now of petabyte-sized operational data warehouses, a more than 30-fold increase in just a decade," Information Difference stated.

Combined with this is the growth in the types of data firms can analyze for insight, such as web traffic information, sensor readings and other forms of machine-to-machine communication. This has led to companies devoting more time and resources to big data analytics and related technologies to help deal with this trend, such as Hadoop.

While many vendors are moving to offer support for this, the research suggested that Hadoop will be a "complementary technology" for the foreseeable future, used mostly for the management of unstructured data such as machine and web-generated information, while traditional databases continue to hold more structured assets.

Among the other trends that are affecting the data warehouse industry are the growing use of cloud computing and the shifting of analytics operations from disk to in-memory computing. These are both areas that Kognitio has a strong presence in, with Information Difference noting it was a "pioneer" in the use of cloud-based analytical tools.

Its in-memory Kognitio Analytical Platform has also been winning plaudits recently, with InformationWeek naming the firm as among its top 16 big data analytics platforms for 2014.

Information Difference explained: "The steadily declining price of flash memory means that larger and larger data warehouse applications can be dealt with in memory rather than on slower (but cheaper) disk."

The firm added that overall, the data warehouse market has "never been more exciting" when it comes to the technologies that are now available to help businesses take control of their information.