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May 20, 2020

Azul Systems’ Addressable Market Opportunity Increases to $2.5B as Oracle Moves Away from Free Java Support and Updates, Says Independent Analyst

SUNNYVALE, Calif. –  According to a survey of enterprise Java users commissioned by Azul Systems (Azul) and conducted in December 2019 by a leading global independent strategic consulting firm[1], Azul—the world’s most trusted open source Java platform—faces a tremendous growth opportunity. Oracle has shifted from providing free Java updates to requiring paid subscriptions to keep production Java SE 8 and Java SE 11 deployments secure and up-to-date. This shift is a significant change that continues to rock the market, tremendously expanding Azul’s total addressable market to $2.5B.

According to the firm’s report, based on a survey of 432 senior Java decision-makers across a wide range of industries, some customers have decided to stay with their existing Oracle-made JDKs, but are finding that their support costs are likely to skyrocket as a result. The rest—fully 80% of Oracle JDK users—are now in the process of considering other options. Some of these are evaluating free open source products; but, with no support or urgent patches provided, these pose substantial risks. The rest—about half of current Oracle JDK users—need cost-effective, enterprise-class solutions that come with timely, production-quality updates, and are therefore “up for grabs.”

In a similar study of software developers released in February, 2020, Oracle JDK had dropped to 34%[2]from the 70% “preferred distribution rating” reported by the same source in 2019, with the bulk of existing users moving to either free or supported OpenJDK-based deployments. Analysts agree that this is a potentially epic shift in the market, and that Azul is in a strong position to gain significant market share during the shake-up.

“Leading industry analysts agree that the majority of Oracle’s JVM customers are looking for a more cost-effective open source solution which supports otherwise unsupported older releases,” said Bill Coleman, Azul’s Chairman of the Board (and co-founder of enterprise software icon BEA Systems). “The potential growth opportunity for Azul is enormous. Every Java customer should include Azul in their evaluation right now. What they’ll find is that Azul OpenJDK is half the cost, on average, for what is essentially the same product combined with industry-leading support and extremely high customer satisfaction. Azul OpenJDK—Zulu, whether enterprise or embedded—is an equivalent product to Oracle’s but it’s 100% open source, supports more platforms and systems, and provides longer support for more Java versions, timely production-ready security patches with strict SLAs, and deeper and broader customer support.”

“In addition,” Coleman added, “The Azul Zing JVM is a higher-performing, pauseless solution with improved throughput which drives efficiencies, improves user satisfaction and time to market, and reduces infrastructure costs.”

The independent survey provides support for Coleman’s statements. “The most tangible benefit of using Azul OpenJDK,” explained one of the survey respondents, a CTO/CIO at a growing company, “is that I can use it with certainty absolutely everywhere. Versus other JDKs, Azul is usable with the same quality of performance across my cloud vendors and for my on-premises solutions in Windows, Linux, or whatever else.”

As for the Azul Zing JVM, as one customer, a Chief Strategy Officer, explained in the survey: “Azul has truly optimized the JVM to create a superior, higher-performance technology. They give you the highest SLA and are flexible around pricing when need be. Their support is unparalleled. If you need that degree of throughput through your servers, Azul JVM is by far the best option.”

As the largest company 100% focused on Java and the JVM, exclusively delivering JVMs to the enterprise for 15 years and used by hundreds of thousands of Java developers and millions of connected devices, Azul’s great strength is the depth, breadth, quality, and responsiveness of its customer support. With these clear benefits over Oracle, Azul is strongly positioned to gain significant share during this market shift.

Azul’s product portfolio includes:

  • Azul Zulu Enterprise—a 100% open source, fully standards-compliant Java Development Kit (JDK) and runtime platform with flexible pricing and support plans, no proprietary licenses or field of use restrictions, timely security updates, and the industry’s best support from Azul’s globally-distributed support team. The level of support is extremely important to many customers, as one survey respondent, a VP of Global Information Security, explained: “One of the big benefits of Zulu is its strong support and the optionality of the level of support you want to receive. Customers perceive Azul as really trying to work with them to find the best solution that fits their business needs.”
  • Azul Zulu Embedded—the only 100% open source Java platform for ISVs plus IoT and embedded OEMs that is fully certified for Java SE compliance and completely customizable for embedded systems in Java-based products such as routers and switches, ATM machines, Point of Sale (POS) systems, avionics systems, RFID readers, and automotive infotainment, as well as robust, high-function designs throughout the IoT. “I would recommend Azul Zulu Embedded to anyone who wants to get started or switch from Oracle,” said one of the survey respondents, a CTO. “I’ve had a great experience on support and pricing. They are quick responding to issues, active in the Java community, and reactive when there is a bug.”
  • Azul Zing—the only JVM with pauseless garbage collection technology, ensuring fast startup and consistent high performance without GC pauses, jitter, or application timeouts. Optimized for Linux and x86 platforms, running on-premises or in the cloud, Zing is designed for enterprise applications and production workloads ranging from web-facing apps and human-facing response times to latency-sensitive trading and payments platforms. “They were the only JVM that we could truly trust to not fail us,” said one survey respondent, a VP of Infrastructure Technology and DevOps. “In a high-stakes environment,” said another respondent, a CTO, “you cannot afford anything less than Azul.”

Azul Systems

Azul Systems is the largest company 100% focused on Java and the Java Virtual Machine (JVM), providing the world’s most trusted open source Java enterprise platform. Azul’s Java runtimes power Microsoft Azure; the cloud infrastructure of companies like Bazaarvoice, Priceline, and Workday; and the operations and products of Avaya, BMW, Credit Suisse, Deutsche Telekom, LG, Mastercard, Mizuho, and Software AG. Azul’s customers include 26% of the Fortune 100, 50% of Forbes Top 10 World’s Most Valuable Brands, and all 10 of the world’s Top 10 financial trading companies. Azul solutions are available for developers, ISVs, enterprises with on-prem and cloud deployments, as well as for OEMs building embedded and IoT devices. Visit and follow us on Twitter @azulsystems. 

[1] Survey conducted by a leading global independent strategic consultancy firm in December 2019. Source surveyed 432 senior Java decision-makers across a wide range of industries, including Finance, Healthcare, Insurance, IT, Education Services, Oil & Gas, and Transportation. Approximately 80% of survey respondents were CIO/CTOs, Directors, or VPs, mostly working for large companies and covering the whole of their development activity.

[2] JVM Ecosystem Report 2020, p. 7;