January 25, 2010 – Data appliance provider Netezza today announced Skimmer, a new appliance product intended to expand the company’s capabilities across the enterprise.
Using the same basic core technology as TwinFin, Skimmer takes TwinFin off the rack and into a non-expandable configuration.
“It’s new and it’s not new,” says James Kobielus, senior analyst for Forrester Research who describes Skimmer as key to the partner-focused analytic-solution component of Netezza’s strategy. “Skimmer is a much smaller capacity platform that’s a sister to TwinFin – and they play well together.”
Skimmer’s presence maintains Netezza’s status as a viable competitor in the enterprise data warehousing market. It presents a competitive option to the small and midsized market that can be used as that basis for an applications appliance or as a spoke centered around a TwinFin hub.
The new release also presents the kind of aggressive price performance Neteeza has tried to establish with TwinFin, according to Phil Francisco, vice president of product management and product marketing for Netezza. Skimmer provides a scalability of 10 terabytes for approximately $12 to $13 thousand dollars per terabyte, compared to TwinFin’s $20 thousand per-terabyte cost for close to a petabyte of scalability, said Kobielus.
It’s that type of price performance that Kobielus describes a potential preemptive strike against Microsoft’s anticipated and similarly priced SQL Server release. “It neutralizes the low-cost bragging rights that Microsoft might want to claim when it rolls out that data warehousing appliance.”
Skimmer can also be viewed as a response to IBM’s smart analytics systems that will incorporate a full set of IBM software, said Kobielus. While Netezza does not extend into the software arena, the small to midmarket focus of their platform enables its independent software vendor partners to build complete analytic solutions that incorporate a data warehouse appliance.
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