Overall, Oracle's move reflects its oft-stated desire to avoid the commodity server market in favor of selling engineered systems, as well as a belief that even smaller companies can be enticed to invest in such products.
Still, the announcement drew a skeptical response from one close observer of the database industry.
"This doesn't solve Oracle's SMB problems, which include the fact that Oracle software is too difficult and costly to administer," said analyst Curt Monash of Monash Research. "The appliance will make a modest dent in that one, but it's not any kind of game-changer, because the issues are central to the antique design of the Oracle [database]."
SMBs are also looking more and more to SaaS (software as a service) options, and ISVs tend to avoid using Oracle when feasible, he added.
"Oracle is not well positioned to thrive in the SMB market, except maybe through its MySQL subsidiary, but that has a long way to go too," Monash said.
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