In many ways, the battle for dominance of the public cloud will come down to which platform can attract the most support from independent software vendors (ISVs). The more applications running on a public cloud, the greater the theoretical consumption. The more consumption there is, the more economically competitive a public cloud service provider can be in terms of delivering compute and storage services at scale.
With that issue in mind, Oracle on June 20 launched its Cloud Platform Ready for ISVs. Under the terms of the program, ISVs can register and publish their applications in the Oracle Cloud Marketplace.
That capability means those ISVs will become much more visible to the IT organizations using the Oracle Cloud Marketplace to download applications, said David Hicks, vice president for worldwide ISV, OEM and Java business development. Oracle currently claims to have more than 425,000 customers, all of which it is actively trying to move into its cloud.
ISVs can request access to Oracle Cloud Specialists and other technical resources directly from the Oracle Partner Network (OPN) and can apply for OPN Cloud Standard program benefits, including easy access to Oracle Cloud development and test environments.
Finally, ISVs participating in the program also become eligible to receive the Oracle Cloud ISV Partner of the Year award.
For Oracle, the recruitment of ISVs is crucial in its ongoing battle to stay relevant in the public cloud computing market that is currently dominated by Amazon Web Services, Microsoft, Google and IBM.
In its latest fiscal quarter Oracle noted that it added more than 2,000 platform-as-a-service (PaaS) environments along with more than 1,600 software-as-a-service (SaaS) application customers. The challenge that Oracle faces is that many of the ISVs it is trying to recruit could find themselves potentially competing with Oracle applications.
However, Oracle provides ISVs that compete with it, such as SAS Institute, with a platform that gives ready access to an extensive base of enterprise customers as well as Oracle field sales people, 25,000 global partners and 15 million developers, Hicks said.
Many ISVs prefer to participate in a single, large existing ecosystem rather than having to provision and manage their applications on multiple clouds, he said.
However, that subject is still a matter of debate among ISVs, explained Jeff Kaplan, managing director for THINKstrategies, a consulting firm focused on cloud computing. Some may want to standardize on a single cloud while others see multiple clouds as a way to expand their routes to market, he said.
“There are a lot of points of view. For now, most of the ISVs on the Oracle cloud are going to be their traditional partners,” he said.
However, by relying on Oracle for both their PaaS and infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS), ISVs will enjoy substantial savings in operational costs when deploying cloud applications, Hicks said.
“Our cloud and partner strategy continues to evolve,” said Hicks. “ISVs will get to connect to other types of partners.”
How many ISVs Oracle can recruit, of course, is still an unknown. But given the focus Oracle has on the cloud these days, it’s not likely that any effort to recruit those ISVs will be spared.
Michael Vizard has been covering IT issues in the enterprise for more than 25 years as an editor and columnist for publications such as InfoWorld, eWEEK, Baseline, CRN, ComputerWorld and Digital Review.