Mixpanel is one of the first and probably the leading event analytics solution in the SaaS market. They collect data with their SDKs from your clients and allow you analyse your data with a simple user interface. We also have the similar flow for data ingestion, you can use our SDKs or API directly in order the send the event data and similar to Mixpanel, we provide segmentation (event explorer), funnel, retention, explore (user attribution) and insight (user drill down) features.
Mixpanel stores the data as you sent in their data warehouse and provides you a set of features to analye your data but we enrich your data, sanitize it depending on what you need and store it in your data warehouse for you and allow you to run both high level features similar to Mixpanel and also any kind of complex analytic queries on your event dataset.
Mixpanel uses their in-house database to store the event data. AFAIK, it’s JSON based and in-memory. Since JSON occupies much more space than columnar storage types and memory is expensive, their price is expensive even for other SaaS services and also it doesn’t do ETL, it stores the events you sent. Mixpanel doesn’t let you to visualize the data returned from your custom query in a chart that you want, it has pre-defined reports, allow you to change the parameters and it automatically updates the charts depending on the parameters you selected.
And you cant almost do none of them through Google Analytics as well as if you're not paying per year +150K to them :)