I met John Abel, chief technology architect for Oracle EMEA today, to talk about Oracle's so-called "red stack". Far from being an Oracle-only strategy, Abel said Oracle's main objective with the strategy was to tackle the complex integration issues that exist between different layers of a customer's IT strategy. He says people want agility - ie speed of implementation. Vendor lock-in is less of an issue.
So while Oracle may indeed have a product to fit across all tiers of an IT architecture, Abel sees customers buying specific components and using Oracle's preferred orchestration methodologies to potentially lower the cost of IT integration.
From the hour-long conversation - the first I have had with Oracle for several months - it seems that the company's strategy is to give businesses the same software, whether they wish to deploy in the cloud, or on-premise.
Abel believes that IT needs to change how applications and infrastructure is procured. People today are building private clouds:so they buy each layer of their IT architecture separately. The hardware and infrastructure is separate to the platform, which is separate to the applications/business logic. He feels that IT must consider business benefits throughout all layers of the IT stack - but the constituent components do not have to be exclusively Oracle's.