Why is Oracle dropping development of software for the Intel Itanium? According to customers, it's all about taking out HP's HP-UX Unix platform. At least that's what 450 of them told the Gabriel Consulting Group. Oracle says it's ending development because it believes Intel is focusing on x86 while Itanium approaches the end of its working life. CRN notes:
HP is by far Intel's largest Itanium customer, taking nearly all Intel's Itanium output to build HP Integrity Unix servers, NonStop servers, and OpenVMS servers. Oracle applications are the most common software run on HP's HP-UX Unix platform, and so a move by Oracle to stop development for the Itanium would be a serious blow for this part of HP's business.
About two thirds of those responding to Gabriel's respondents expect Oracle to raise license and support costs for its Itanium customers. Also, 79 percent believe the move is  intended as a step toward putting all of Oracle's competitors at a disadvantage. More than 70 percent on't agree with the suggestion that Intel will discontinue the processors any time soon. But it's all business: Most customers don't think the move is about any kind of grudge held by Oracle boss Larry Ellison or President Mark Hurd -- who'd been HP's president and CEO until last year. Also, Oracle's previously said it's not ending support for the Itanium platform, it just won't develop new products for it.