Welcome!

Weblogic Authors: Yeshim Deniz, Elizabeth White, Michael Meiner, Michael Bushong, Avi Rosenthal

Blog Feed Post

It’s happening – Oracle moves closer still to networking infrastructure

I have commented a few times (here and here) that the move towards software-defined everything means that new combatants will be stepping into what has been traditionally been a fairly sparsely populated networking boxing ring. If one of the end games for SDN is a tighter link between applications and the network, then it was always only a matter of time before the networking guys stepped into applications, and the application guys stepped into networking.

And so as Oracle announces another acquisition in the SDN space, this appears to be playing out as predicted.

In case you missed it, Oracle announced this week that they were acquiring WAN virtualization player Corente, whose “policy-defined and enforced abstraction layer…replaces the hard-wired enterprise network with an intelligent software-defined one.”

There are a few stories about the acquisition here:

So what does this mean for the networking industry?

This is the next step in what will likely be a long journey from enterprise software into broader IT infrastructure. The future of IT is not silos of compute, storage, networking, and applications. So any company whose ambition is to be the leading IT vendor will need to broaden their portfolio to include the various elements. This means that companies like Oracle will need to add aspects of networking to their existing compute, storage, and application assets.

It also means that traditional networking vendors will need to, at some point, expand their own reach across the infrastructure/application boundary. And the faster that Oracle moves, the more quickly those changes will play out.

None of this is lost on Cisco, by the way. At their Insieme coming-out party, CEO John Chambers didn’t talk about networking. His dialogue with analysts and reporters has consistently targeted Cisco’s objectives to be the leading IT company.

Two titans squaring off in a bout with stakes as large as the whole of IT spend will have repercussions for the entire industry.

  • Selling motions will evolve, which will change infrastructure insertion. If the IT silos do in fact come down, then what triggers new infrastructure purchases? Today, infrastructure purchases are largely capacity-based. I need this many new servers, which will drive this much new storage and network capacity. But is it possible that you start to see application-led sales? I want to deploy this enterprise application for this many users across this many data centers. Over time, it is conceivable that supporting infrastructure is pulled through. Obviously, this won’t happen overnight, and it certainly won’t happen everywhere.
  • Product bundling will match the selling motions. If the purchasing behavior is around these broader IT solutions, then vendors will start to bundle their products that way as well. This means that purchases at the largest enterprises become even more about volume purchase agreements. This makes life hard for anyone who is competing in the networking space on price. If the network is getting pulled along with compute, storage, and applications, the larger vendors can just drop the price contribution for networking gear, effectively negating any cost advantages. Blending margins across a portfolio (particularly one that includes software products) is common practice already.
  • Differentiation will move from price to value. This is one of those Oh Duh! observations that ought to be happening anyway, but it is worth pointing out that if you are not competing at the overarching IT solution level, you better be offering value of some sort underneath. Being cheaper won’t cut it. You have to be able to demonstrate how you contribute to the broader IT experience. This should expand the double-Ex discussion from CapEx and OpEx to CapEx, OpEx, and AppEx (application experience).
  • In solutions, orchestration of workflows and workloads is key. Once the universe moves to these broader solutions, there will be an even more urgent requirement to make all these disparate systems work together. This means that integration will become a major sales attack vector. For the big guys, this will shift a larger part of the competitive battle to professional services. How will a company like Oracle who has mastered the professional services business fare in a more technical environment? How will a company like Cisco that has mastered the technical side fare when they have to turn it into a stronger business? And what happens to systems integrators (looking at you, IBM) who will want to compete in the same space? For the smaller players, professional services can help mitigate risk, but it means that gear will need to be designed expressly with integration in mind. Any vendor who doesn’t talk in very explicit terms about this already is in trouble. You have to build integration in from the architectural beginnings; as a bolt-on, integration is not effective.
  • The partner landscape will be interesting. If professional services are important for the larger customers, imagine the opportunity that exists for VARs in the mid-sized space? The VARs that are adding integration skills (orchestration, DevOps, and so on) will have a marked advantage over those who do not. There will be large VARs who will be put out of business because they failed to identify and evolve with the shifting sands.
  • There will be some wildcard changes as well. I don’t know what they will be (they are wildcards, after all), but what happens to companies that typically lead these large IT transformation initiatives (Accenture, Deloitte, Infosys, PRTM, and so on)? Does this create more opportunity? Does this create more competition? Do they compete with the vendors they support?
  • Where are IBM and SAP in all of this? It is probably unfair to call out IBM as they are active in OpenDaylight and have been pursuing DOVE for some time. But what happens to these giants if the battle shifts?

Those of us in the networking industry typically focus on our industry fairly exclusively. But disruption rarely occurs from within. If we are too insular, we will collectively miss the moves at the periphery, which could leave a lot of us out in the cold (even those of us who call the warm West Coast our home).

To read more on this topic, check out:

The post It’s happening – Oracle moves closer still to networking infrastructure appeared first on Plexxi.

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Michael Bushong

The best marketing efforts leverage deep technology understanding with a highly-approachable means of communicating. Plexxi's Vice President of Marketing Michael Bushong has acquired these skills having spent 12 years at Juniper Networks where he led product management, product strategy and product marketing organizations for Juniper's flagship operating system, Junos. Michael spent the last several years at Juniper leading their SDN efforts across both service provider and enterprise markets. Prior to Juniper, Michael spent time at database supplier Sybase, and ASIC design tool companies Synopsis and Magma Design Automation. Michael's undergraduate work at the University of California Berkeley in advanced fluid mechanics and heat transfer lend new meaning to the marketing phrase "This isn't rocket science."

IoT & Smart Cities Stories
In his general session at 19th Cloud Expo, Manish Dixit, VP of Product and Engineering at Dice, discussed how Dice leverages data insights and tools to help both tech professionals and recruiters better understand how skills relate to each other and which skills are in high demand using interactive visualizations and salary indicator tools to maximize earning potential. Manish Dixit is VP of Product and Engineering at Dice. As the leader of the Product, Engineering and Data Sciences team at D...
Dynatrace is an application performance management software company with products for the information technology departments and digital business owners of medium and large businesses. Building the Future of Monitoring with Artificial Intelligence. Today we can collect lots and lots of performance data. We build beautiful dashboards and even have fancy query languages to access and transform the data. Still performance data is a secret language only a couple of people understand. The more busine...
Bill Schmarzo, author of "Big Data: Understanding How Data Powers Big Business" and "Big Data MBA: Driving Business Strategies with Data Science," is responsible for setting the strategy and defining the Big Data service offerings and capabilities for EMC Global Services Big Data Practice. As the CTO for the Big Data Practice, he is responsible for working with organizations to help them identify where and how to start their big data journeys. He's written several white papers, is an avid blogge...
Nicolas Fierro is CEO of MIMIR Blockchain Solutions. He is a programmer, technologist, and operations dev who has worked with Ethereum and blockchain since 2014. His knowledge in blockchain dates to when he performed dev ops services to the Ethereum Foundation as one the privileged few developers to work with the original core team in Switzerland.
René Bostic is the Technical VP of the IBM Cloud Unit in North America. Enjoying her career with IBM during the modern millennial technological era, she is an expert in cloud computing, DevOps and emerging cloud technologies such as Blockchain. Her strengths and core competencies include a proven record of accomplishments in consensus building at all levels to assess, plan, and implement enterprise and cloud computing solutions. René is a member of the Society of Women Engineers (SWE) and a m...
Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life settlement products to hedge funds and investment banks. After, he co-founded a revenue cycle management company where he learned about Bitcoin and eventually Ethereal. Andrew's role at ConsenSys Enterprise is a mul...
Whenever a new technology hits the high points of hype, everyone starts talking about it like it will solve all their business problems. Blockchain is one of those technologies. According to Gartner's latest report on the hype cycle of emerging technologies, blockchain has just passed the peak of their hype cycle curve. If you read the news articles about it, one would think it has taken over the technology world. No disruptive technology is without its challenges and potential impediments t...
If a machine can invent, does this mean the end of the patent system as we know it? The patent system, both in the US and Europe, allows companies to protect their inventions and helps foster innovation. However, Artificial Intelligence (AI) could be set to disrupt the patent system as we know it. This talk will examine how AI may change the patent landscape in the years to come. Furthermore, ways in which companies can best protect their AI related inventions will be examined from both a US and...
Bill Schmarzo, Tech Chair of "Big Data | Analytics" of upcoming CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO New York (November 12-13, 2018, New York City) today announced the outline and schedule of the track. "The track has been designed in experience/degree order," said Schmarzo. "So, that folks who attend the entire track can leave the conference with some of the skills necessary to get their work done when they get back to their offices. It actually ties back to some work that I'm doing at the University of San...
When talking IoT we often focus on the devices, the sensors, the hardware itself. The new smart appliances, the new smart or self-driving cars (which are amalgamations of many ‘things'). When we are looking at the world of IoT, we should take a step back, look at the big picture. What value are these devices providing. IoT is not about the devices, its about the data consumed and generated. The devices are tools, mechanisms, conduits. This paper discusses the considerations when dealing with the...