Database giant cosies up to customers with new social push.
Oracle announced a deluge of social-slanted cloud tools at OpenWorld 2014 yesterday as it tries to portray itself as the Facebook for business.
After announcing its revamped IaaS, PaaS and SaaS cloud earlier this week at its annual San Francisco conference, the traditional database giant continued to repaint itself as a modern technology giant, following customer criticism that it came late to the cloud game.
Thomas Kurian, executive VP of product development, unveiled a raft of new cloud services focused on a social theme.
One was Oracle Social Network Cloud, which Oracle hopes will become the business world’s favourite Facebook lookalike.
He said: "Think of it as a corporate Facebook. It looks like Facebook, you can collaborate with people within your company using secure conversations. And you can publish data into it from your corporate applications.
"For example, if it’s a salary increase it will automatically update and tell people they’ve got the salary increase. You can use it as your live, personal dashboard to monitor what’s going on in your company."
He said social network was very popular in the firm’s packaged SaaS applications, claiming it counts close to four million users.
Closely linked to the social network is a new collaboration tool, Oracle Document Cloud Services.
Kurian said: "It does two important things. First of all it synchronises your documents across all your devices. So if you happen to have a PC, a phone and a tablet, it synchronises any changes you make on your PC to your Excel spreadsheet across all your devices.
"It also allows you to share through a secure work group these documents with other people in your organisation."
This push into collaboration puts Oracle into competition with Microsoft’s own Office 365, which allows you to work on documents on a variety of devices, all updated via the cloud, and bolstered by Delve, a social network for business.
Meanwhile, start-ups are crowding the collaboration space, with offerings from Huddle
But Oracle has pressed on with a string of mobile and social announcements designed to ensure it has as few chinks as possible in its armour.
They include its Mobile Application Framework, which allows customers to build apps (nbin Oracle’s Platform-as-a-Service, if they wish) for iOS and Android without changing the code, and Mobile Application Accelerator.
The latter allows non-techy staff to build mobile apps, Oracle stated. Lastly, the company also provides Oracle Mobile Security, after CTO Larry Ellison called security Oracle’s number one priority in his Sunday keynote.
This provides the same security settings for both mobile and local device access device use.