Microsoft on Tuesday revealed that it will be discontinuing its Office PerformancePoint product and consolidating that server's capabilities into Office SharePoint Server Enterprise. As part of the consolidation, the PerformancePoint functionality is being rebranded as PerformancePoint Services for SharePoint.

"We have decided to consolidate the scorecard, dashboard and analytical capabilities from Office PerformancePoint Server into Microsoft Office SharePoint Server Enterprise and rebrand them," Microsoft senior vice president Kurt DelBene said in a prepared statement. "Our decision is based on wanting customers to truly experience pervasive business intelligence in their organization at a low cost through the tools they use every day. In today's economic climate, having the most pertinent information available, allowing you to clearly view the health of your organization, is imperative. We want to give what customers need in a way that makes sense for their business--through the widely adopted Office SharePoint Server, Excel, and SQL Server."

PerformancePoint was released in September 2007 as a standalone offering in what was then a growing family of Microsoft Office-based server products. The product was a business process management (BPM) tool aimed at helping traditional office managers create budgets, forecast future finances, and perform other business intelligence (BI) tasks. The problem with BI, of course, is that it remains a relatively untapped, high-end market. So moving PerformancePoint functionality into the more widely-used SharePoint product line is at least in keeping with Microsoft's philosophy of bringing technology to the masses.

Looking ahead, Microsoft says that it will issue a final service pack, SP3, for PerformancePoint Server 2007 in mid-2009. But there will be no further standalone versions of PerformancePoint sold to the public. PerformancePoint 2007 will be supported by Microsoft "well into the next decade," DelBene says.