IBM is getting into the platform-as-a-service (PaaS) market by standardizing on Cloud Foundry, originally developed by VMware and now part of Pivotal, the EMC spin-off.
The move is significant for IBM, one of the most traditional of enterprise software companies. It reflects a new effort by the company to adopt open-source cloud technologies. IBM has standardized on MongoDB, the open-source NoSQL database. IBM is also one of the major sponsors of OpenStack, the open-source cloud software for customers to build out their own infrastructure.
The relationship is multi-fold with a focus on IBM WebSphere, the company’s web and mobile software group. Through WebSphere and Cloud Foundry, a customer can build out apps for specific purposes. For example, a retailer may want to build out an e-commerce app to take advantage of a promotion that runs on different cloud infrastructures.
The fuller picture for the partnership is in the community focus. IBM is a governance shop. A core value to customers is providing technology to large companies that have to pay close attention to compliance issues. As part of the partnership, the companies are advocating for an “open governance” model for application development in the cloud. For Pivotal, it’s an opportunity to make a play as the dominant PaaS provider. In this regard, Pivotal will host its first conference for the Cloud Foundry community this September with the appropriate title “Platform.”
What this all means is another sign of the fuller acceptance for the PaaS market and the embrace of the cloud for serving as the foundation for building and deploying apps.