Oracle ‘Cloud Services Complete,’ But Can They Compete?

Oracle CEO Larry Ellison has had a change of heart.

Just seven years after Oracle’s Chairman and CTO Larry Ellison called cloud computing “gibberish,” “insane,” and “idiocy,” the company has completed one of the greatest pivots in recent tech industry history (an industry that ‘pivots’ so much it’s dizzying):

After Oracle’s release of dozens of new cloud services on Monday, Ellison announced that Oracle’s cloud services are “complete.”

“You can now move all your applications out of the data center and into the Oracle Cloud,” said Ellison, who served as Oracle’s CEO from the company’s foundation in 1977 to 2014.

With company’s announcement of 24 new cloud services on Monday, Oracle can now claim the widest range of services of any software company in the cloud. Those services include some competitively priced platform and infrastructure offerings, and Ellison was not shy about the company’s goals for those products.

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“We are prepared to compete with on price,” said Ellison, as he announced Oracle’s new Archive Storage Cloud Service, a cold storage solution similar to Amazon’s Glacier and Google’s Nearline.

“Our new archive storage service goes head-to-head with Amazon Glacier and it’s one tenth of their price,” said Ellison.

Amazon Web Services (AWS) is widely recognized as the leader in cloud infrastructure market and has previously been targeted by undercutting attempts from both Google and Microsoft. Those attempts ultimately failed—Amazon recently revealed strong cloud revenues, despite the company’s continuous price slashing.

This attempt at luring customers away from Amazon shows a marked shift in Oracle’s priorities, and with good reason: the software giant’s Q1 revenue from new software licenses fell 17% from Q1 2014, while revenue from cloud services grew 29% during the same period.

However, low prices aren’t the only differentiator for Oracle’s cloud suite. The company is one of the only offering a ‘full-stack’ of cloud solutions and has put a heavy emphasis on easy integration—all of Oracle’s cloud solutions are compatible with existing on-premise Oracle software.

“One of our strategies is to offer the same technologies on-premise and in the cloud, so you can easily move your applications back and forth with the push of a button,” said Ellison.

That kind of integration could be highly attractive to enterprises working in a hybrid IT environment.

Jeff Edwards
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