Oracle disputes research report

The software maker is challenging a report by Gartner Dataquest that says Oracle has lost ground to IBM in the database market.

Margaret Kane
Margaret Kane Former Staff writer, CNET News
Margaret is a former news editor for CNET News, based in the Boston bureau.
2 min read
Oracle is challenging a research report that says the software maker has lost ground to IBM in the database market.

The report, released by Gartner Dataquest on Tuesday, found that Oracle had slipped to second place, with about 32 percent market share in the overall database market. IBM had 34.6 percent of the revenue in the overall database market in 2001, according to the report.

But in a statement issued Wednesday, Oracle claimed that the wrong data was examined in the report, and challenged IBM and Microsoft to provide "audited numbers" to analyst firms.

Representatives from Gartner and Microsoft were not immediately available for comment.

"About two years ago Oracle said, 'IBM's not even a player in the database space.' But since about 18 months ago they have been reacting to our momentum," said IBM spokeswoman Lori Bosio. "DB2 has grown for 20 consecutive quarters. We've grown double digits on Unix and Windows. And it's interesting that the details weren't suspect until IBM became number 1."

"The revenue and growth data provided to the industry analysts by the vendors themselves is not independently validated, outside of Oracle's," Henley said in the statement.

Oracle also said that the report examines the overall database market, including older database software running on mainframe systems, instead of the modern database market "comprising UNIX, Linux and Windows NT." Oracle claims that only IBM benefits from the use of overall market share numbers, since much of its database revenue comes from software installed on older systems.

The study found that IBM's DB2 and Microsoft SQL Server 2000 databases gained share compared to Oracle's 9i database in all categories, although Oracle still dominated the $3 billion Unix market in 2001.