Oh no – It’s Mini Me!
Man oh man – I try to take my birthday a little light and I wake up to some crazy news that Oracle has some Exadata mini type machine. Are ya kidding me? – first off, wasn’t Exadata touted as the single machine that solved all of the IT woes from transactional workloads to analytical workloads, stretching to handle even operational analytic workloads? What – Now you tell me that there is a baby machine for the lowly mid market… ugh. Nice about face
The net here is that most large organizations forget about the Mid Market until it is too late. Reps go after the biggest accounts that yield the most revenue and take the least time to keep calling on – common sense when we are financially incented to act this way. Now Oracle (Notorious for large ULA type agreements that tax companies with insane support costs) wants to grab at the emerging markets and mid markets
“We’d much rather sit down with a customer and agree on a company license – use as much as you need. Unlimited License Agreement (ULA) is our preferred license agreement.” – Larry Ellison
Perhaps I take this a bit personally as I’ve been in and worked in the ‘Mid Market’ before my current role. Even in my current position, I have WW responsibility and well, reality is that the massive, complex enterprise strategy that might work for a Fortune 50 bank, does not always work for the emerging, high growth company inVietnam.
So back on track with my original rant – I am surprised that press actually picks this up as some type of news worthy release. I’m not able to see how this is so special, different or ‘good’ other than the fact that Oracle is now attempting to take their bundles into the mid market. Per this article – Mark Murphy from Piper Jaffray states:
“Our checks and analysis indicate Oracle will introduce an Exadata “mini” box at its OpenWorld user conference in October. The device is a mid-market database appliance designed to be extremely easy to manage and small enough to sit underneath a desk. We estimate a price point of $100K-$200K, well below Exadata prices of $500K-$2.5M. This is an important strategic move for Oracle because thus far, Exadata’s price tag has created sticker shock for all but the very largest organizations.”
At that price point, it looks like Oracle will try to compete with IBM Netezza 1000 appliance – yet Netezza is a true appliance – built from the ground up for analytical workloads (It does not masquerade as a transactional system).
At the end of the day, $200K+ is still pretty pricy for the Mid Market. (and who would want to put something for that price ‘under a desk’? – Apparently the marketing team from Oracle have not talked to the hardware folks from Sun to learn about overheating …nice)
Now back to where this is personal. While we might not be able to market with the ‘whiz bang’ capabilities that marketing driven companies have – we do invest in building technologies that our customers ask for. Earlier this week we announced our latest offering for the Mid Market – The IBM Smart Analytics System 5710.
The Smart Analytics System starts at the sub $50K (US$) price point and is optimized for analytical and operational analytical workloads (think operational data store (ODS) capabilities that Bill O’Connell spoke about yesterday). Add to this that this also includes data mining, business intelligence reporting and more! – all as standard features of InfoSphere Warehouse (at the core of the Smart Analytics System).
Good for Oracle to wake up and start acknowledging that they need to create better offerings for the Mid Market – But shame on them for missing the mark with such an expensive (and generic) appliance – And shame on those that pick this concept up as ‘revolutionary’ …yet for me – well – other than the FUD that comes from this – I’m already in the market solving robust business problems at half the cost with Smart Analytics… and that’s better for our customers.