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"Amazon's lead is over” - Why Oracle is off-target in cloud

James Henderson | Sept. 21, 2016
Larry Ellison seeks headline moment at Oracle OpenWorld, but facts get in the way.

Guthrie said value consists of “the higher level services, the features, the performance and the ability to differentiate or deliver true innovations in a way that isn’t possible on prem(ises).”

For Oracle represents merely the latest vendor seeking to displace AWS with its own IaaS offering, as it bids to take a large chunk of an expanding market.

As reported by ARN, enterprise IT executives expect 60 per cent of workloads to run in the cloud by 2018, as organisations reassess business models amidst accelerating adoption levels.

Consequently, the opportunity is clear for Oracle to make serious inroads into a blossoming market but to issue a serious reality check, they remain a distant, distant player in an increasingly crowded market.

While Gartner Magic Quadrants don’t always get the reseller blood vessels pumping with excitement, for Ellison and his team, Oracle doesn’t even get close to recognition, such is the vendor’s minuscule market share.

“AWS is now a mature provider, yet it remains an agile, innovative thought leader with a broad impact across a range of IT markets,” Gartner analyst, Lydia Leong, said.

“It has the richest array of IaaS and PaaS capabilities. It provides the deepest capabilities for governing a large number of users and resources. It continues to rapidly expand its service offerings and to offer higher-level solutions.”

In retaining a multiyear competitive advantage over all its competitors, Leong said AWS acts as the “common reference point” for competitive benchmarking across the industry.

“Although AWS will not be the ideal fit for every need, it has become the "safe choice" in this market, appealing to customers who desire the broadest range of capabilities and long-term market leadership,” Leong added.

Leong’s assessment of AWS’ reputation within the cloud market aligns with that of IT departments across the world, who remain unlikely to test the water with new a provider such as Oracle.

As InfoWorld cloud expert, David Linthicum, put it; “The familiar brand may get IT to take a meeting, but at the end of the day, IT shops are conservative and usually stick with the established providers for a given space. That's AWS in the case of IaaS, followed by Google and Microsoft.”


With some in the industry providing Oracle with the headline they craved, what cannot be argued is the vendor’s all-out assault on all things AWS, as displayed this week at Oracle OpenWorld in San Francisco.

“It’s already clear that those priorities include shifting Oracle’s competitive efforts against AWS into overdrive by presenting what it sees as a superior technical and operational IaaS alternative to AWS,” Ovum practice leader of IT Services, John Madden, said.

As explained by Madden, the first indications came during the recent Q1 earnings call with financial analysts, when Ellison - who acknowledged that AWS is a “formidable competitor” - talked about the vendor’s new bare metal IaaS services that allow a customer to lift-and-shift their entire existing infrastructure “without any changes.”


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