Oracle launches data integration suite

Oracle will try to make a big splash in the data integration space with a new product suite.

Oracle this week launched Oracle Data Integration Suite, which combines traditional data integration capabilities with an array of middleware and tooling for constructing a service oriented architecture.

Data Integration Suite costs US$60,000 per CPU (central processing unit) for a package that bundles Oracle Data Integrator and Oracle/Hyperion Data Relationship Manager with the company's BPEL Process Manager, enterprise service bus, application server, business-to-business engine and business rules engine, according to a statement.

"This is really Oracle attempting to go a long way toward providing a credible alternative to IBM Information Server," said James Kobielus, an analyst with Forrester Research. IBM released Information Server in October 2006; the product sits at the center of the company's Information on Demand Strategy.

In turn, Oracle's suite aligns its data-integration offerings with its Fusion Middleware line for SOA.

Additional options in the suite include a new pair of data quality tools, Oracle Data Quality for Data Integrator and Oracle Data Profiling, which the company developed with Harte-Hanks Trillium Software.

"Finally, Oracle now has best-of-breed data quality tools," Kobielus said.

Also, Oracle is optionally offering its Coherence Data Grid, technology acquired through Oracle's purchase of Tangosol last year, and a number of adapters, including ones for applications and unstructured content, as options.

The company did not provide pricing information for the optional items.

Overall, the suite reflects the further integration of two key Oracle acquisitions, Sunopsis and Hyperion, into the company's core Fusion Middleware lineup, according to Kobielus. "There's a lot of Sunopsis and Hyperion DNA in this," he said.

Oracle bought Sunopsis, maker of an ELT (extract, load transform) tool in October 2006. The company plunked down US$3.3 billion in March 2007 for Hyperion, which had a master data management product among its offerings.

IBM, Oracle and SAP are now the main industry contenders in terms of a truly broad data-integration suite, according to Kobielus. Other large enterprise stack vendors, such as Red Hat or Sun, might be wise to make some acquisitions in this space, he added.

Marketing materials announcing the Oracle's release stress the suite's applicability to heterogenous environments, noting its support for a broad array of databases, including IBM DB2, MySQL, Microsoft SQL Server, Teradata and Oracle.

This is telling, right down to Oracle's positioning of its own database at the end of that list, Kobielus said.

"IBM is also strongly heterogeneous," he noted.