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More than 60,000 attendees and over 250 exhibitors and speakers from more than 90 countries are expected to take part in the Oracle OpenWorld 2019 event.

The four-day event, with over 2,200 educational sessions, will take place from September 16 to 19, at Moscone Centre in San Francisco, California, US.

This year, Oracle is bringing a more human-centred focus to its products and solutions with a focus on digital transformation, led by demos and hands-on labs.

The main absence from the event will be its co-Chief Executive Mark Hurd, who is taking a leave of absence from the company for health reasons, and his duties will be shared by co-CEO Safra Catz and Oracle co-founder and Chief Technology Officer Larry Ellison.

The year looks better for the cloud industry due to the global economic instability as organisations are moving to the cloud to cut costs and improve operational efficiency by using artificial intelligence and cognitive technologies.

According to research firm Gartner, worldwide IT spending is forecast to reach $3.74 trillion in 2019, an increase of 0.6% from 2018 while the enterprise software market will experience the strongest growth in 2019, reaching $457 billion, up 9% from $419 billion in 2018 and another 10.9% in 2020 to total $507 billion.

The worldwide public cloud services market is projected to grow 17.5% in 2019 to total $214.3 billion, up from $182.4b in 2018,

While SaaS represents a $95 billion market in 2019 compared to $80b in 2018, the biggest out of the cloud spending, it will grow to $143.7b in 2022.

Autonomy gains traction

Oracle’s cloud-related success mostly lies with SaaS [software as a service] applications, so Oracle, a services company rather than a product company, will focus on IaaS [infrastructure as a service] and next-generation autonomous cloud database at the event.

An autonomous database is a cloud database that eliminates complexity, human error and manual management associated with database tuning, security, backups and updates; tasks traditionally performed by the database administrators (DBAs).

According to research firm International Data Corporation’s Public Cloud Services Tracker in April, Oracle gained the most market share globally out of all enterprise applications SaaS vendors for three years in a row.

In fiscal 2018, the company’s revenue from applications totalled $11 billion and its co-CEO Hurd said that it could be doubled to $22 billion by migrating its existing on-premises business to SaaS platform.

With a focus on autonomous database, Oracle will unveil updates to Oracle Database 19c, which runs both on-premises and in the cloud and reveal more details about its partnership with Microsoft in a bid to improve interoperability between Azure and Oracle’s IaaS, known as Oracle Cloud Infrastructure.

“Autonomy is the defining attribute of a Generation 2 Cloud,” said Ellison.

“The autonomous database is the most successful new product in Oracle’s history. We added more than 500 new autonomous database cloud customers in the first quarter and expect to more than double that in the second quarter. We now have over 2,000 customers, paying customers, for the autonomous database.”

Next growth phase

The US software giant, with decades of database software and technologies and having a strong penetration in the enterprise space, is gearing up for the next growth phase in cloud services.

 “Oracle’s response to autonomous is a critical element for dealing with enterprise-wide security as it gives a greater level of agility for organisations to differentiate and optimise their business, well beyond the competition,” Richard Smith, senior vice-president, UKII, ECEMEA and South Clusters for Technology at Oracle.

Oracle’s competitors offer the ability to automate scaling and backups but what Oracle is offering is intelligent and self-managing database by eliminating human administrative access with the power of artificial intelligence and machine learning in a bid to bring a high degree of automation to routine administrative tasks.

Oracle offers two types of autonomous databases – Autonomous Data Warehouse (ADW) and Autonomous Transaction Processing (ATP).

 “Autonomous Data Warehouse is a capability that we are seeing now in the cloud. ATP, which will be launched soon, will allow customers to deal with autonomous capabilities and also deploy in a very scalable environment to allow customers to scale up or down, with their computing requirements around transaction processing,” he said.

Based on deep machine learning and artificial intelligence, he said that autonomous capabilities are built on every component of the portfolio.

 “Data is the new battleground but businesses are struggling to keep up with tight IT budgets and the volume of data growing exponentially”, Smith said and added that Oracle is built on data applications portfolio more than four decades ago.

According to KuppingerCole, Oracle has been named as this year’s overall leader in database and big data security.