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IBM Celebrates 25 years of the IBM i's

The IBM AS/400 server platform is still seen as "future-proof" by IT decision makers despite originally being launched 25 years ago.

Since the launch on 21 June 1988, the AS/400 over time has evolved into the i Series, System i and latterly IBM i, but Big Blue has continued to focus on promoting the server as one that offers reliability and low cost of ownership. And IT buyers seem to agree according to research.


Most users of IBM i systems class the applications they run on as legacy applications compared to younger systems because of green screens. Few realise that this is only visual and with IBM I application modernization they can take an application built in the past and changing it to be more appropriate for today’s business opportunities. Modernization means changing a legacy application to become a modern application.

 

Legacy Applications Modern Applications
• Text-based user interface – users need to learn • Graphical user interface that is intuitive and
   (not readily understandable)    familiar
• Concealed tree-like hierarchy • Menus and tree-like hierarchies are visible
• Navigation through fixed structures • Point-and-click navigation
• Standalone applications make integration  • Simplified integration with other applications
   Difficult.    including office tools like Microsoft Word 
     and Excel
• Large applications – often with a single code • Application architecture is tiered – applications
   base – where any change is a change to the    built from reusable components – change  
   whole application    occurs at the component level rather than the 
     whole application
• Constrained by device type (such as a 5250 • Available on multiple devices with a browser –
   terminal)    personal computers (Windows and Web) and
     mobile devices (smart cell phones and portable
     devices).

 

Since the launch on 21 June 1988, the AS/400 over time has evolved into the i Series, System i and latterly IBM i, but Big Blue has continued to focus on promoting the server as one that offers reliability and low cost of ownership. And IT buyers seem to agree according to research.

Infor, a provider of business application software, and a major IBM partner, has published its EMEA System i Survey 2013, undertaken amongst over 100 managers and high level decision-makers.

The survey found that 71 percent of IBM i platform end-users agreed with the statement, "We believe our System i platform is future-proof." A further 22 percent were neutral. Only 7 percent disagreed with the statement.

When asked whether their business system is "very reliable", 92.5 percent agreed and the remaining 7.5 percent were "neutral". None of the respondents running their mission-critical business systems on IBM i disagreed.

When asked whether total cost of ownership of their IBM i system compares well with alternatives, nearly two thirds (63 percent) agreed.

But many users indicate that they plan further investment in the platform, with 90 percent of respondents considering reporting and analytics, mobile and 24x7 availability as either a need or a priority for investment.

It is clear that a lot of businesses are still reliant on IBM i and that the platform is holding its own amongst younger technologies.