ANALYSIS: Oracle wants to become what IBM, the original Hewlett-Packard and Dell EMC once aspired to be: the true one-stop shop for all of your enterprise IT needs
In-memory computing is a hot topic right now, Fowler said, but it’s really only useful in reporting analytics because it’s not highly available. “We announced today [Sept. 21] that [Oracle’s in-memory database] is now highly available. That means you can use in-memory everywhere; that’s an example of ‘We’re different,'” he said.
Most of the new products and services that Oracle announced at OpenWorld 2016 were begun three to five years ago, Fowler said. “People don’t realize how hard it is and how long these things take [to get ready for market]. We mirror in-memory databases, too. The challenge for the other vendors in catching up is: ‘Well, how long ago did you start?”‘
The ‘Never Been Done Befores’
- high-availability/mirroring of in-memory databases;
- a new combined software-and-silicon solution to accelerate SQL queries;
- silicon-secured memory layer to protect in-memory arrays;
- the ability to recover data to any transaction point in Oracle’s ZDL (Zero Data Loss Recovery Appliance) array;
- AL4 availability certification in a delivered open system; this refers to Oracle Exadata in a Maximum Availability Architecture (MAA) configuration is recognized by IDC Research as a system that delivers at least 5-nines’ availability and is categorized in the IDC AL4 fault-tolerant market segment.
Those items may be a bit on the esoteric side of IT, but they are new features.
Oracle didn’t name these innovations as “never been done before” at OpenWorld, although after questioning by eWEEK, Fowler realized they are key steps forward in existing products.
“You actually helped me with this because sometimes we who are working on all this stuff are too close to it, so sometimes we don’t see the obvious,” Fowler said with a smile. “We should have named all this onstage!”
From Silicon to Public Cloud
A lot of people don’t realize this, but Oracle is now the only IT company of any size and scope that is able to provide everything in enterprise IT—from SPARC silicon chips to data center hardware to public/hybrid/private cloud services and everything in between. IBM, HPE, Dell EMC (no specific software division after selling it off earlier this year), Cisco Systems and a few others do substantial parts of this whole picture, but not as extensively as Oracle.
That would be offering basically any type of IT system, on-premises, public cloud, private cloud or hybrid cloud, for any size business.
Oracle is already highly successful in the old-school Fortune 1000. The question is this: Can the company educate and convince more of the world’s midrange companies and startups that it can deliver efficient cloud services at prices that are affordable and won’t lock them into scary long-term contracts?
Oracle will need to demonstrate this over a period of time if it is to succeed in the new-gen IT economy. The landscape is hardly what it was a decade ago; there’s too much new competition that can erode the big company’s business over the next several years.
Originally published on eWeek