Oracle CTO Larry Ellison Details Two-Layer Cloud Strategy To Undercut AWS Prices

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Oracle founder and CTO Larry Ellison on Tuesday shared the software giant's strategy to attack the public cloud market through services that deliver cost benefits and more-flexible consumption plans.

At an event held at Oracle's Redwood Shores, Calif. headquarters, Ellison described discrete strategies for the IaaS and PaaS layers of the cloud stack, both designed to undercut the prices of rival cloud providers.

As an Infrastructure-as-a-Service provider, Oracle plans to match AWS list prices for compute and storage, but deliver infrastructure that speeds up the execution of workloads, reducing overall cost, he said.

[Related: Oracle Illuminates Plan To Compete In Public Cloud With New Data Centers, Bare Metal Servers]

"Because Oracle's infrastructure is so much faster than Amazon, your bill will drop by half," Ellison pledged.

Moving up the stack to Platform-as-a-Service, encompassing Oracle database, analytics and middleware services, the push has been to develop advanced automation software that allows customers to slash labor costs—the primary expense in running a database—while also removing the risk of human error.

While the approaches are very different at those two layers, Ellison said the goal is the same: "to reach a point where we can guarantee if you move a workload from Amazon to Oracle, your bill will drop by 50 percent. "

Ellison promised more details in two weeks' time at the company's annual OpenWorld conference that starts Oct. 1.

Bolstering both pricing strategies will be the introduction of new billing models meant to ease purchasing decisions for cloud services.

Oracle allows customers to transfer their existing database licenses to IaaS environments, either from a rival like AWS, or Oracle's own offering.

But because labor costs "are what you really have to drive out of your data center," Ellison said, as well as the human error factor, Oracle's leadership sees its PaaS offerings as ultimately a better deal than infrastructure.

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