Friday, July 21, 2006

The Upshot of Applications Unlimited

Now that the smoke has started to settle from Oracle’s unveiling of Applications Unlimited earlier this year, it seems like a good time to review the high points of the program and the impact on Oracle customers.

In the simplest terms, Applications Unlimited is Oracle’s program for continuing to enhance and support all Oracle applications (including PeopleSoft, JD Edwards and Siebel) with dedicated teams so long as customers are willing to pay for those services. No forced migrations, no deadlines, no required moves to Fusion applications.

As I understand it, the support offered under Applications Unlimited is tied to Oracle’s Lifetime Support policy. Lifetime Support offers a tiered approach to support services, stair-stepping through reductions in support services and increases in support costs as time passes since the products General Availability release. You can learn more about Oracle’s Lifetime Support policy here.

So, what’s the upshot of Applications Unlimited? From my perspective, there are at least two significant long-terms impacts for Oracle customers…and they’re both positive.

First, Applications Unlimited provides Oracle Applications customers some measure of control in determining when, if ever, they will upgrade their applications or move to Fusion Applications. The decision will essentially consist of a trade-off between the costs of remaining on the current version versus the benefit of upgrading or migrating…and that decision will rest in the hands of each Oracle Applications customer.

Second, it puts the burden on Oracle to give customers a reason to upgrade. They’ll be compelled to provide outstanding value propositions in order to persuade customers to upgrade or migrate…because customers will always have the option of sticking with what they’ve got.

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