From Ferris comes an analysis:
Oracle announced a new email offering on July 10, 2002. Main points of the “Oracle Collaboration Suite” are:
* Uses Outlook and browsers as the main clients
* Main services are email, calendaring, voicemail, address book
* Searching works across many data objects
* Message store and directory based on Oracle relational database
What strikes us as most significant about the announcement is:
* Oracle is one of IT’s main development partners. If Oracle is really serious about this offering, it could become a credible alternative to Lotus/Microsoft.
* In principle, it makes great sense to base the back end on a relational database. Eg, backup and recovery could be much easier and practical, and message stores could be much larger than is practical today.
* It’s hard to make a message store work properly using a relational database. Everyone that’s tried so far has ended up giving up.
* There’s very interesting integration between voicemail and the message store. In a nutshell, you can dump expensive and proprietary voicemail systems, and use Oracle instead. This is the way unified messaging ought to work, and will work in the future.
* Potentially the offering could be highly scalable, much more so than Exchange or Notes. It could thus be of interest to service providers.
* If Oracle can deliver much better reliability and lower TCO, along with high Outlook fidelity and voice innovation, many businesses might be distracted from their current Exchange/Notes orientation