RealTime IT News

Wind River Rejiggers Pricing Scheme

Alameda, Calif.-based "embedded" software maker Wind River Systems on Friday took a page from rival Microsoft's book, announcing a major pricing policy shift aimed at simplifying its sales process.

Wind River announced it would change its pricing policy to per-seat annual subscriptions instead of the complicated per-project licensing arrangements that handles the way clients had access to the company's software at multiple locations.

Wind River, which hawks technology for creating operating systems for non-PC products like networking equipment, Internet routers, printers and digital TVs, also announced another major strategy shift away from selling components for the embedded market in general.

Instead, with an estimated $23 billion market there for the taking, the company plans to target four specific verticals in the consumer, industrial, networking and server markets.

Previously, Wind River sold its technology individually but by dumping that complicated pricing scheme and opting to target specific verticals, the company believes it can expand the 30 percent of the commercial embedded software market share it owns.

The move to change its pricing scheme closely mirrors a move by competitor Microsoft to scrap the way it licensed its software and adopt a more client-friendl y plan. Wind River also competes in the commercial "embedded" space with Red Hat and Green Hills Software.

Like its main competitor, Wind River is adopting a new plan that bundles products for five specific industry segments and sell annual subscriptions to enterprise clients. The five new platforms is expected to ship later this month.

The market-specific integrated embedded platforms being introduced by the 2,000-employee firm includes the Wind River Platform For Consumer Devices (Platform CD), styled as an embedded enterprise Platform for digital consumer device development.

Applications in this vertical include digital imaging devices, Internet broadband access, digital television and multimedia information appliances.

The Platform ID vertical (Industrial Devices) would target enterprises that make end applications include robotics, medical equipment and test and measurement equipment. It integrates industrial connectivity including DCOM and CAN, graphics, management and industrial network access.

The company's Network Equipment platform would allow the creation of network infrastructure equipment and end applications include concentrators, DSLAMs, multi-service switches and wireless base stations. The company also said its Server Appliances (Platform SA) is aimed at developers who build server appliances and storage networking devices. End applications include dedicated servers, network attached storage (NAS), storage area networks (SAN), Web caches, load balancers and security equipment.

The other vertical would (Platform DO-178B) allows the development of safety and mission-critical systems for aerospace and defense. End applications include flight management and control systems, nuclear plant controls and weapons systems. Platform DO-178B is ideal for applications that must meet RTCA/DO-178B and EUROCAE/ED-12B certification standards and features a certifiable RTOS.