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New Oracle IaaS called 'significant' but faces uphill climb vs. AWS

SAN FRANCISCO -- Oracle continued to fill in elements of its three-layer cloud stack with a slew of product announcements, including a significant upgrade of the infrastructure as a service platform that allows Oracle users to run their applications in the cloud.   

Larry Ellison, executive chairman and CTO, claimed the second generation of the Oracle IaaS can now compete with Amazon Web Services, the leading cloud services provider. "Amazon's lead is over," he said in his keynote speech at the 2016 OpenWorld conference.

Holger Mueller, vice president and principal analyst at Constellation Research, said the Oracle IaaS upgrade had the biggest impact of the many cloud announcements coming from the vendor.

"Oracle's always been talking about IaaS, but really not pushing it out," he said, noting that the addition of a third data center has strengthened the Oracle IaaS offering by providing three "availability domains" along with improved "bare metal" hardware and a dedicated network between the data centers.

"I think that we'll see that Oracle has found, potentially, their IaaS for the future," Mueller said, but that goal will depend on an increase in capital expenditures devoted to the Oracle IaaS platform, which have not been on par with those of leading cloud providers.

In this video interview from the Oracle OpenWorld 2016 conference, Mueller goes on to discuss product announcements besides Oracle IaaS, including Oracle Database 12c Release 2, which he said has "lots of interesting container, pluggability and multi-tenancy capabilities."

For example, Oracle Cloud at Customer, whereby the vendor provides on-premises deployment of the same systems it uses for Oracle IaaS and other cloud offerings, is mutually beneficial to both parties. "It also means cloud scaled for customers on site," he said.

Another new product, Oracle Adaptive Intelligent Applications, helps the vendor to catch up in artificial intelligence and machine learning, according to Mueller. The applications bring real-time analytics to Oracle's software-as-a-service applications, such as Oracle ERP Cloud.

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Oracle OpenWorld 2016: News and views

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How does your organization view the Oracle IaaS as a cloud deployment option?
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It’s too little, too late. We’ve already started down the road to AWS with a fairly substantial migration of apps, services, databases, everything.
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Given that AWS, Azure and Google are all investing $1B per quarter for their IaaS services, it will be interesting to see how much Oracle invests, especially since they claim to be building their own data centers. 
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It is an uphill battle for Oracle, but it’s interesting to watch from the sidelines. One side has the leg up on infrastructure, the other on software. Should be a good “fight.”
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Although Oracle has started late in the Cloud environment, the question will change from "Adoption" of Cloud to "Migration" between Clouds. How much "Lock-in" does any Cloud hosting provider have? In a world of "Lift & Shift" or use of multi-cloud deployments to mitigate risk, being late may not ultimately matter too much.
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