For the past few years, "big data" has been a popular buzzword among large global companies like Oracle (NASDAQ:ORCL), Salesforce.com (NYSE:CRM) and EMC. In a manner of speaking, everyone now wants their heads in "the cloud." But not everyone knows how to get there effectively.
The company that can collect massive amounts of data and analyze it to enhance customer capabilities is certain to have an advantage over its competitors. It would seem that IBM is now making its way to the top of the list. While IBM has been a mainstay in the support arena for companies who rely on cloud computing, IBM has become somewhat of a forgotten story. But that's all about to change.
To stay competitive, IBM has improved its DB2-database software. This new version is much faster easier-to-use and makes it economically feasible to sift through huge amounts of data. The technology that many IBM employees around the world contributed to is called BLU Acceleration -- something that I believe will be a game changer. Here's why.
Companies are pouring in information from multiple sources. These include social networks, mobile devices as well as your standard enterprise workstation. As this information comes in, it has to be analyzed. But there's an inherent cost to do this. And this is where BLU Acceleration comes in.
IBM assists its clients in keeping costs low and accessing that data much quicker. Clients such as European bank Handelsbanken and Yonyou Software have given the company feedback on how amazing this new and improved DB2 database software is. Aside from the cost reduction, clients have marveled about the speed as some queries that took 7 minutes were shown to have dropped to 8 milliseconds. This can't be overstated.
For large companies, this is very important. Sometimes databases don't fit into memory that is available, even when companies might have high compression ratios but DB2's system allows access to that data at an accelerated rate. This is one area that will help IBM stay ahead of its competition. Not only is "big data" access important, but a whole new arena that companies are also dealing with is the "mobile market."
Now the company is going to start something called its "MobileFirst Initiative."
The average consumer is making a decision based upon influences from multiple sources before a purchase is made. Influences may come from the type of mobile apps that are available, friends, social websites, business websites, or recommendations. For this reason, retailers are challenged to assist consumers in finding a way to guide consumer's search while they are "mobile" and then make a purchase wherever and whenever they want.
There is a lot that goes into this process. Businesses have to deal with online assets, provide consistent service on all types of devices and operating systems, and make sure screen size is pleasant and user-friendly. The whole process for the business and the consumer is quite complicated but IBM has put together a task force to help create a seamless system for its clients.
The ability to integrate all these sources of information into a seamless stream for consumers as well as train employees to be able to deal with questions and problems customers face is important. An inquiry coming from a mobile device, call center, or by phone complicates the service that employees are expected to provide clients. It's a difficult process IBM helps clients integrate into.
BLU Acceleration is one reason IBM will continue to be a front runner of "big data" management globally. This is one example why investors should continue to keep IBM as a "foundational investment" in a long-term portfolio. If its 'MobileFirst Initiative' works as well as its "E-business Initiative," it's just another reason IBM will continue to be a global industry leader.
Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it. I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.