Oracle Finally Unveils Its Linux Plans
from the finally dept
This last April, Oracle CEO Larry Ellison dropped hints that his company might be interested in offering its own version of Linux. Since then, there’s been lots of speculation about what he meant. Because the company’s been so acquisitive, many figured that the company would buy a Linux distributor, like Red Hat. Today, at its OpenWorld conference, Ellison finally announced the company’s strategy. Starting immediately, the company’s going to offer full support for Red Hat Linux, including maintenance and bug fixing, and it promises to do it at a cheaper price than Red Hat itself. Investors in Red Hat have fretted about this possibility for awhile, though it’s not all bad news, since it amounts to a big endorsement of the company’s offering. The bigger theme to note is that in the software industry, the business models of closed and open source companies are converging. The software itself, which has no marginal cost, is getting cheaper and cheaper, while the money is made on the service and support deals that come along with it.