Some thoughts on the 2013 Gartner Magic Quadrant for APM

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As you may know, this week Gartner published its 2013 Magic Quadrant for Application Performance Monitoring (APM). Here at AppDynamics we’re thrilled to be positioned as a Leader for the second year running. Our position this year is further up and to the right than last year, a fact that we think reflects the phenomenal growth of our company in the last year and the increasingly widespread adoption of our product in the enterprise. But that’s not why we’re celebrating at AppDynamics today. Today, we’re toasting what we believe is the death of the dinosaurs.

The Gartner Magic Quadrant

In case you’re not familiar with Gartner’s Magic Quadrant, here’s a quick introduction: Every year, Gartner’s APM analysts conduct extensive research of every vendor that meets their qualifications, including hundreds of customer interviews. At the end of their research, they position each vendor on two axes, Completeness of Vision and Ability to Execute, and then place them accordingly on a Quadrant. Those who demonstrate market understanding on both axes are placed in the top right Leaders quadrant, where AppDynamics has appeared in both years we were able to participate. This report is widely used and trusted by APM buyers because it incorporates not only the analysts’ expertise, which along with the evaluation criteria, also factors in feedback from the hundreds of APM users that they interviewed over the course of the year. Because the positions of the vendors on the quadrant reflects the experience of real APM users, the Quadrant is an excellent way to visualize the marketplace, and when taken year-over-year we believe it exposes industry trends and changes that are otherwise difficult to picture. Which brings us to the reason we’re celebrating: We believe this year’s Gartner Magic Quadrant, when compared with its predecessors, marks the end of an era for the legacy software vendors in the space, and the beginning of an era for the newer players like AppDynamics.

Three Years of Change

If you look at the last three years of the Gartner Magic Quadrant for APM (which you can on Gartner’s website) you’ll notice some pretty dramatic changes. Some dots have disappeared entirely as Gartner tightens its definition of APM in accordance with the needs of today’s buyers. More importantly, others have simply fallen away from the Leaders quadrant and into Challengers, Visionaries and even Niche Players. Here are our insights on what we believe accounts for this shift, and how AppDynamics has escaped this downward pull. Legacy APM software has been on the decline for some time – after all, the software they’re toting has been obsolete for years. Today’s APM buyer doesn’t want the complex, expensive software that these companies are shilling. So that’s why we’re celebrating at AppDynamics today. It’s not just because an analyst recognized our ability to execute and completeness of vision, or because we’ve grown 165% in the last year. It’s because we believe we’re seeing big changes ahead in the APM world—a world that will no longer tolerate hard-to-use software that’s ill-suited for today’s complex, distributed application environments. It’s great to see the market take a stand and vote for quality. And it’s great to be able to say “farewell” to the dinosaurs.

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