Five Companies That Came To Win This Week

Oracle says it has transformed its Sun hardware operations into a profitable business, and with new co-president Mark Hurd now in charge of increasing hardware sales, this trend looks set to continue.

In Oracle's Q1 earnings call this week, Hurd gushed about "the clear growth opportunities I see going forward" and said boosting hardware sales will be one of his primary goals. "I don't believe there is any other company in the industry that's better positioned than Oracle," Hurd said.

It's been an astonishing turn of events for Oracle, and having an executive like Hurd in a supporting position is downright unfair for the completion. Oracle investors seem pleased as punch with the situation, as Oracle shares soared more than 8 percent in midday trading Friday.

Android devices are selling like hotcakes, and according to the latest comScore market share figures released this week, Google's mobile OS grew from 12 to 17 percent in the three-month period ended July 31. Android growth surpassed that of Apple's iOS and RIM's Blackberry, both of which declined slightly during the period.

The Android threat is well established at this point, but Google is eventually going to have to rein in carriers who've been leveraging the "openness" of Android to load up devices with the useless software trials that are unaffectionately known as "crapware", which users often have to root their phones in order to delete.

Avaya channel partners are excited about the launch of Flare Experience, and some are even calling it the first game-changing announcement Avaya has made since acquiring Nortel's enterprise unit.

The full offering -- a collaboration dashboard designed to run on a host of devices, desktop and mobile, plus a fleet of UC and video endpoint technologies to go with it -- dramatically expands Avaya's collaboration portfolio and also gives it an end-to-end video offering for the first time.

"They hit the mark," Joseph Cassano, executive vice president at Juma Technology, a Farmingdale, N.Y.-based solution provider, told CRN this week. "I think it's Avaya showing that they're going to create technology as opposed to waiting for their competitors to do so."

HP, which acquired Fortify Software earlier this month, continued its security acquisition spree this week by acquiring security and compliance software vendor ArcSight for about $1.5 billion. In doing so, HP adds highly regarded security incident and event management (SIEM) technology to its budding security portfolio.

ArcSight had been looking for a buyer for some time, so the deal wasn't a complete surprise. Still, HP now adds real-time event monitoring, risk assessment and threat response to its arsenal while also removing ArcSight from the radar of other industry big fish that may have also been setting their sights on the company.

Samsung this week said it plans to launch Galaxy Tab, a consumer tablet that's being hailed by some industry watchers as an iPad killer, through all four major U.S. carriers this holiday season.

We'll have to see if this is all a bunch of bluster, but Samsung is doing the right thing by resisting the siren song of carrier exclusivity and choosing a broad go-to-market strategy.

Samsung is also wise in choosing Android, which has the most momentum in smartphones right now. Whether Android can duplicate this success on tablet is still unknown, and Samsung doesn't have much experience in the mobile industry, but the company appears to making some solid bets with the Galaxy Tab.