IBM Launches Initiative of SOA Products, Services

IBM launches a new SOA effort to fill gaps in the company's portfolio of SOA tools so that IBM can serve as a one-stop shop for SOA customers.

IBM announced a broad-based assault on the service-oriented architecture market, introducing a wide variety of new and enhanced products and services aimed at helping IBM customers implement SOA and bolstering the companys position as a leader in the SOA space.

In a call with reporters and analysts, Steve Mills, IBM senior vice president and general manager of IBM Software Group, joined Mike Daniels, senior vice president of IBM Global Technology Services, and Robert LeBlanc, general manager of IBMs WebSphere business unit, to describe the new lineup of four new and 23 enhanced products and 11 new services based on the companys experience with nearly 3,000 SOA customer engagements and 2,500 business partners.

"IBM is making $1 billion in SOA investments this year," Mills said.

Indeed, Mills said IBMs new SOA software and services focus on four key areas: the use of business process management (BPM, governance, preparing IT infrastructures for SOA; and creating SOA services).

Tracy LeGrand, chief architect and vice president of technology strategy and architecture at Ameriprise Financial, Minneapolis, an IBM SOA customer, said IBM and its products have "played an important role in our SOA journey. And IBM is now enhancing these products to cover spaces where we had to bring in other products" to fill out areas IBM previously did not cover.

Mills said IBM has 300 SOA patents. He added that according to a study by Wintergreen Research, Lexington, Mass., IBM has a 46 percent share of the SOA market.

"Were quite impressed with the completeness, depth and accuracy of IBMs SOA message," said Jason Bloomberg, an analyst with ZapThink, Waltham, Mass.

/zimages/4/28571.gifClick here to read more about IBMs big bets on SOA.

"The greatest challenge that all vendors in the SOA space are facing today is that you cant get SOA from products, since SOA consists of best practices.

"IBM fully understands this fact, and balances the best practices offerings within their consulting arm on the one hand with a comprehensive product strategy in support of their customers SOA initiatives on the other."

On the BPM front, particularly for business modeling, the latest release of WebSphere Business Modeler features new business user tooling and visualization aids, IBM said.

In addition, IBM has introduced a new BPM Methodology and the BPM Competency Center, LeBlanc said.

Meanwhile, the new release of WebSphere Business Monitor supports BAM (Business Activity Monitoring), and the latest release of WebSphere Process Server enhances support for advanced human workflow capabilities, IBM officials said.

And the IBM Workplace Dashboard Framework provides customers with reusable service-oriented components, administration tools and the ability to create dashboards, LeBlanc said.

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