The question to weigh is whether such a move makes financial sense in the longer term, since annual maintenance fees may kick in on some products before a customer is actually prepared to start using them, Jones added. “Oracle’s discounting policy can lure you into buying excess products and capacity and then you are doomed to pay maintenance on this shelfware forever,” he wrote.
Shelfware, unused software, remains a pervasive problem in the IT industry, according to a new survey commissioned by 1E, maker of AppClarity, an application that looks for “software waste” in an organisation’s IT environment. More than 80 percent of roughly 500 respondents to the study in the US and UK said they had shelfware.
Maintenance fees over time add up to far more than the initial cost of licences, which are commonly discounted substantially off list price. Vendors prize maintenance fees, since they provide steady revenue even when new licence sales are hard to find. This makes it difficult for customers to get vendors like Oracle to budge.