The application server market is consolidating fast as larger vendors begin to bundle the software within server operating systems, and smaller vendors aggressively seek to differentiate.
Analyst company AMR Research conducted a study into the top eight vendors of application servers, a key piece of infrastructure software that underpins most large ecommerce applications, ensuring high-performance and basic integration with other applications.
Scoring the vendors on five main factors (functionality, technology, quality, cost, and market significance), AMR predicts that only four vendors will remain at large in the market: BEA Systems, IBM, Oracle, and Microsoft. These four vendors together account for 82% of application server revenue, worth $3 billion in 2002.
Those likely not to survive the consolidation process are Sun, Hewlett-Packard and Sybase, which AMR says are not making sufficient investment to gain ground against their stronger competitors.