Ellison: Oracle will deliver world's 'most comprehensive Cloud'

Oracle's cloud was a long time coming but rises above the rest, Larry Ellison claims

Oracle CEO, Larry Ellison, has declared the company is ready to offer "the most comprehensive Cloud on the planet Earth," during a webcast event.

"It's been a long time coming," Ellison said of the Oracle Public Cloud, which encompasses Oracle's suite of Fusion Applications delivered as both SaaS (software as a service) and PaaS (platform as a service) features, including the Java Cloud Service and Database Cloud Service. It's also the home of Oracle Social Network, the company's foray into Facebook-like collaboration tools for enterprises.

Most of the details discussed were well-telegraphed, given that Oracle Public Cloud was first announced at the OpenWorld conference in October and the company had put up a website filled with specifics, save for details such as pricing and general-availability dates.

The applications will feature per-user, per-month pricing, Ellison said. But it still wasn't clear by the end of the presentation whether all the components are broadly available now.

Meanwhile, Ellison's proclamation of Oracle's newfound cloud prowess on Wednesday stood in stark contrast to his past mockery of Cloud computing as hype-filled "gibberish" applied improperly to long-standing technologies. Such jibes were nowhere to be found as the CEO spun a broad strategic vision.

"We made a decision to rebuild all of our applications for the cloud almost seven years ago," Ellison said of Fusion Applications, which are also available on-premises. "It took seven years of work, thousands of people, billions of dollars, to make the transition from being an on-premise application provider to being a Cloud application provider, as well as an on-premise provider."

Oracle is hoping these attributes will have special allure for customers, since they'll be able to choose either deployment model and move applications between them.

Oracle is set to offer 100 different cloud applications, spanning ERP (enterprise resource planning), CRM (customer relationship management), HCM (human capital management) and other software categories, Ellison said.

The event also provided Ellison with an opportunity to tout what he called Oracle Public Cloud's many advantages over rivals such as SAP and Salesforce.com, as well as to engage in some of his traditional competitive trash talk.

One major advantage that Oracle Public Cloud provides is better security for customers, according to Ellison.

"We have very comprehensive, fine-grained security in our system," he said. The Central Intelligence Agency was Oracle's first customer, and security "has been very, very deep in our culture for a long time," he said.

"Your database is not commingled with other customers' data," Ellison added. "It's a big difference between our Cloud and others on the market." Customers also get their own virtual machine, "so you are protected," Ellison said. "Modern virtual technology is how we offer safety."

Ellison has criticised the practice of multitenancy, a software architecture common in cloud services where a number of customers share a single application instance.

Multitenancy has long been cited as an advantage for cloud companies, since they can upgrade many customers at once, lowering costs, but Ellison turned that argument on its head.

"We think a modern Cloud lets you decide when you want to upgrade, not have the Cloud vendor tell you when you have to upgrade," he said. "We think that's a very big deal. We'll allow you, within reason, to decide when to upgrade." Customers will get about a one-year window to determine when an available upgrade is right for them, Ellison said.

Some customers may have questions about how often upgrades to Fusion Applications will actually be available, given that Oracle had been criticized for years over the delays in delivering the initial suite. But Ellison portrayed the project's timeline as something necessary and vital.

"If there's one point I would like to make this afternoon, it's how hard it was, how long it took, how many people were involved, how much it cost," he said.

In contrast, rival SAP won't have anything "for real" in the Cloud until 2020, Ellison claimed. "I don't think they'll make it. Our applications will have eight years of maturing. 2020. Excellent vision. 2020. Great news program. 2020. Terrible year to get to the cloud."

"All SAP's got is SuccessFactors," he said, referring to the Cloud HCM (human capital management) vendor that SAP recently acquired. "I don't think that's enough." Oracle has made Cloud acquisitions of its own in the form of Taleo, RightNow and Vitrue.

Those remarks drew a hasty response from SAP on Wednesday.

"As usual, you can tell who Oracle is most worried about by the competitors they criticize most," the company said in an emailed statement. "Building a profitable Cloud business depends on scale -- with 17 million users, SAP's SuccessFactors business has the largest user base of any Cloud apps provider." SAP is also offering a "complete ERP suite for the cloud today" in the form of Business ByDesign, and has many other "loosely coupled" Cloud applications, the company added.

However, Ellison may have been referring to the fact that SAP's flagship on-premises ERP software, Business Suite, isn't yet rewritten for the Cloud and may not be for some time. ByDesign is aimed at smaller companies and divisions of larger ones.

Meanwhile, another plus for Oracle's cloud is the fact it is based entirely on industry standards, unlike the competition, Ellison said.

"It's very easy to take our cloud applications and extend them and integrate them with applications you have running on-premises," he said.

What Ellison didn't say is that many would-be Fusion Applications customers will choose the cloud deployment option due to the sizable technical hurdles involved in running them on-premises.

Oracle's Cloud also provides customers with a range of social networking-related features, including the ability to collaborate with one another and to reach out to customers on public social sites such as Facebook. At one point, Ellison demonstrated how a marketing professional could develop and deploy a Web store on Facebook without the help of IT staff.

Finally, Oracle's Cloud incorporates a superior core infrastructure, running not on farms of commodity hardware but on Oracle's Exadata and Exalogic database and application server machines, which Oracle has heavily promoted for their high performance.

Exadata and Exalogic also provide superior fault tolerance and high availability, Ellison said. "If a component fails, a disk drive fails, it doesn't matter."

Those systems and others are now being offered with a new set of Platinum services offerings, which were also announced Wednesday during the event.

Chris Kanaracus covers enterprise software and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Chris's e-mail address is Chris_Kanaracus@idg.com

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Chris Kanaracus

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Bitdefender 2019

This Holiday Season, protect yourself and your loved ones with the best. Buy now for Holiday Savings!

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?