Oracleworld - Oracle touts grid computing

Oracle has launched its Grid Index Report at the start of its Oracleworld show. The study will track the understanding,...

Oracle has launched its Grid Index Report at the start of its Oracleworld show. The study will track the understanding, acceptance and uptake of grid computing-related technologies in Europe and will be published every six months.

On an ascending scale of 0 to 10, the first Oracle Grid Index came in at 3.1.

"The study shows that grid computing is following the same adoption patterns as the internet did," said Tim Payne, senior director of technology and marketing for Oracle Europe, Middle East and Africa.

 "We also found that there is a strong correlation between people's understanding of the technology and their commitment to adopting grid computing. In short, people who understand it, are doing it."

For the Grid Index Report, Oracle commissioned Quocirca to interview 603 senior corporate IT managers from the UK, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, the Benelux countries and countries in the Nordic region. The survey was carried out in June and July.

Responding companies were split into two classifications: companies with turnover of €1bn (£680m) or 10,000 employees and companies with turnover of €100m (£68m) or 1,000 employees. The larger companies had a higher overall grid index, of  3.2, compared to 2.9 for the smaller companies, Payne said.

Companies in the retail, financial services and utility sectors showed the highest commitment to grid computing, as did companies in France, Germany, the UK and Benelux, according to the survey results.

Fifty-one percent of survey respondents cited the primary benefit of grid technology as being its ability to reduce overall IT capital expenditure and operational costs.

But the study also found that the lack of awareness of how grid technology works and the benefits it could provide is a major factor affecting adoption rates.

"The main objective is to raise the awareness of grid computing, because as research shows, this market could generate a lot of revenue in the long term," Payne said.

A study published by IDC in March forecast that the grid computing market would exceed $12bn (£6.74bn) worldwide by 2007.

According to Payne, the growing acceptance of grid computing-related technologies generally will have a positive translation for Oracle's bottom line in particular as, he said, it is the company with the best off-the-shelf offerings.

"Oracle works right out of the box, while IBM's grid computing technology is based on its consultancy business. It is unclear what Microsoft's grid computing strategy is, and though it is emerging, it's still several years behind in the market," Payne said.

Oracle sees its Real Application Clusters (RAC) technology as the main stepping stone for its customers toward grid computing.

With 4,200 RAC customers worldwide (1,500 of which are in Europe), Payne said Oracle believes it is well on the road toward further raising grid computing awareness.

Oracle president Charles Phillips has used the show to announce the release of E-Business Suite Version 11i.10.

The company has already been releasing 11i.10 in piecemeal fashion. It launched Oracle CRM 11i.10, which includes updated sales, marketing and partner relationship management modules on 13 August.

Oracle OpenWorld London will run until 8 September.

Laura Rohde writes for IDG News Service


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