What is Oracle Business Intelligence Cloud Service (BICS) and how does it relate to on-premise OBIEE 11g? BICS is an agile BI solution that brings standard OBIEE analysis and dashboarding capabilities to the cloud, but with simplified data load, data modeling and administrative functionality. Built around standard OBIEE 11g, BICS has an updated user interface, which will roll-out to the next release of on-premise OBIEE 12c within the next year. With ease of use, fast time to value and built-in mobile capabilities, users from any skill set can upload and model data, develop detailed analyses and dashboards and share within a small group, department or throughout the entire enterprise.


  • Simplified user interface that is suitable for every user
  • Combine data from a variety of sources: other cloud solutions, on-premise, third-party
  • Multiple ways to upload data to BICS including: BICS Data Loader (hosted in the Database Schema Service that comes with BICS), BICS Rest API and Oracle SQL Developer (via the Oracle Cloud connector type)
  • BICS is bundled with Oracle Database Schema Service, a single-schema database service, 50 GB of storage and 300 GB of bandwidth per month
  • Mobile-ready
  • The Data Modeler is a simplified, browser-based RPD tool, which replaces the Administration Tool
  • Subscription based. Pay monthly as opposed to purchasing recurring one/two year licenses for the software
  • Only two instances with BICS: development and production
  • Simplified administration. Easily set up application roles and take system-wide snapshots to backup and restore the entire environment
  • Data is stored in the Oracle Database Cloud Service which is hosted in the Oracle Public Cloud.
  • Your data is secure! Both the Oracle Database and Public Cloud Service meet the industry’s highest security standards.

Oracle Business Intelligence Cloud Service is a cost-effective, subscription-based service that requires no on-premise infrastructure or timely software installation and configuration. The initial release of BICS has quite a few limitations and exclusions from functionality found in on-premise OBIEE, such as not having access to Essbase, BI Publisher or agents. Also, as of now there is no way of downloading BICS RPDs to use on-premise. I only mentioned a few, but with these limitations in mind it’s probably safe to assume that the goal of BICS is not to replace regular, on-premise OBIEE. At least not initially! It’s more realistic to assume that the target market for the initial release are users within a department who want to take their traditional reporting methods to the next level by quickly standing-up an OBIEE environment, uploading Excel spreadsheets, or CSV documents and creating rich analyses and dashboards in a timely fashion without involving IT.

The evolution of BICS and its relationship with on-premise OBIEE will certainly be exciting times in the world of Oracle BI. We’ll be sure to keep you updated with the latest and greatest. For more information on BICS check out the Oracle BI Cloud Service homepage. If you have any questions or comments feel free to reach me at:

Kristi Smith, ksmith@ecapitaladvisors.com