Sun targets small businesses with affordable pricing for Seebeyond


Sun targets small businesses with affordable pricing for Seebeyond

Cliff Saran

Sun Microsystems has outlined its strategy and new pricing for the Seebeyond ICan (integrated composite application network) application platform it acquired last year, making the middleware product more affordable for smaller businesses.

Seebeyond was previously deployed mainly in the largest businesses to support application integration. After Sun's acquisition in August 2005, it is now part of Sun's Java Composite Application Platform Suite (Java Caps).

The company has combined Seebeyond's business integration software with the Sun Java Enterprise System to create a secure and scalable service oriented architecture (SOA) platform.

Significantly, the suite is being charged at £60 per employee. This makes it attractive to large and smaller businesses that previously would not have wanted to invest hundreds of thousands of pounds on a large-scale Seebeyond project.

Neil Ward-Dutton, a partner at analyst Macehiter Ward-Dutton, said, "Sun's model is to reduce the price to sell a lot more for less money. Smaller businesses can now benefit from using high-end [Seebeyond] middleware."

Massimo Pezzini, vice-president at Gartner, said Sun's software strategy for Seebeyond involves making the platform comply with Java and industry standards. This year, Gartner expects Sun to add Java 1.4, Java Portlets and support for service-oriented architectures to Caps.

"In 2007, the plan is to introduce BPEL 2.0 [Business Process Execution Language], Java Beans Integration and support Sun's identity management suite," he said.

The Sun Java Caps comprises four suites, including the new Sun Java B2B Suite and Sun Java ESB Suite as well as the existing Sun Java Application Platform Suite and Sun Java Web Infrastructure Suite.

Each suite is available individually for a subscription price of £30 per employee per year. When purchased together, Java Caps is discounted to £60 for all four suites - a 50% saving over purchasing them separately.

Sun said the aim of Caps is to provide a foundation for developing web services that are managed and monitored through a common toolset and may be deployed into a common runtime environment or exposed as individual web services.

John Loiacono, executive vice-president of software for Sun Microsystems, said, "With almost no coding whatsoever, organisations can now develop and deploy SOA and Web 2.0 services that leverage existing legacy assets more quickly and at lower total cost than ever before."

What the Java Caps suites include

Sun Java B2B Suite: a subset of the Java Caps targeting users that require the ability to manage the diverse business-to-business requirements across their supply chains, distribution networks and clearing houses.

Sun Java ESB Suite: the Java ESB Suite provides a distributed enterprise service bus through open standards support for Web services, XML, transformation and intelligent routing.

Sun Java Application Platform Suite: this supports process-driven portals, allowing users to deliver role-based composite applications, providing authorised information through a single user experience.

Sun Java Web Infrastructure Suite: the suite provides Sun's Web and identity infrastructure products.

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