Oracle heads into battle against IBM

Now that Oracle is pushing into IBM’s turf, a war of words has erupted between the pair.

This week Oracle’s Larry Ellison said that customers were defecting from IBM in droves now that his company has its paws on the reins of Sun.

He said that his Exadata racked up 30 head-to-head wins against Big Blue’s best in the three months ended May 31.

However Big Blue told Information Week that it was wondering what Ellison was smoking. Oracle is hemorrhaging server revenue and server market share while Ellison flings mud at its rivals, IBM says.

Ironically Ellison said that he is using the IBM business model of half a century ago for Oracle/Sun.  But he sees the IBM of today as his public enemy number one.

IBM doesn’t like him much and says that he is engaging in the same types of misleading comments and comparisons that he used to when he compared Oracle’s databases with those of IBM’s DB2.

An IBM spokesman said that Oracle’s aggressive marketing was not a substitute for important details like a Sparc roadmap.

“Customers we speak with continue to question Oracle’s lack of investment and long-term road maps for systems and are switching to IBM in droves,” the IBM spokesman told Information Week.

More than 100 clients switched to IBM systems and abandoned Sun in the first quarter and IBM expects that trend to continue when it announces its new Power 7 products later this year. Oracle is not investing in Sun’s people or its technologies, and that is reflected in market share, IBM claimed.

Analyst outfit Gartner seems to be siding with IBM.  Its recent reports show that a rebound in the server business, has passed Oracle by.  Its revenue share declined nearly 40 percent. Oracle’s unit shipments declined nearly 30 percent, as customers move away from Sun servers.

Meanwhile, IBM, according to Gartner gained share in X86, UNIX and high-end systems in the first quarter.