Larry Ellison, for one, will welcome our robot overlords:
“If you eliminate human labor, you eliminate human error,” the Oracle Chairman said in San Francisco at the company’s OpenWorld conference, where he unveiled the company’s new database system, Oracle 18c. The first-of-its-kind fully automated database system will have a total downtime of 30 minutes per year and is contractually guaranteed to cost less than half what Amazon charges. Ellison called the new database “revolutionary” and “the most important thing we have done in a long, long time.”
The new system owes its improvements in efficiency and cost to its use of machine learning to manage data efficiently. The application of machine learning to data logs will reportedly improve system security, storage, and accessibility. In addition to directly providing consumers with improved services at reduced costs, Ellison indicated that the automated database would allow employees to concentrate their efforts on planning for future innovations and improving security protocols.
Ellison, who has been talking up his new Cloud product for some time, teased the announcement of the new 18c on the Oracle quarterly earnings call last month in what has become a customary preview of large announcements planned for the conference. He is also expected to announce an automated cybersecurity system at the conference on Tuesday.
The 18c service will launch for data warehousing in December with online transaction processing planned to be available next June.
Oracle is bringing its product to market at a time when price competition in the Cloud storage market is getting more intense. Amazon last month was forced to move to charging for its services on a per-second basis, to avoid being undercut by Google and Microsoft. Microsoft last week announced a raft of discounts for customers willing to lock themselves into contracts up to three years. However, Amazon Web Services, which pioneered the “infrastructure as a service” model, still maintains a huge lead over its rivals: according to data from Gartner, AWS’s $9.8 billion in revenue last year was over four times the combined revenue of Microsoft ($1.6 billion) and Google ($500 million).