Intel announced this week its Big Data strategy with its crown jewel their own Hadoop distribution. Many people will be surprised that a chipmaker wants to be your Hadoop supplier as well. McAfee is Intel’s most visible enterprise software offering and it was an acquisition, not an offering based on organic growth.
Intel’s Hadoop distribution, on the other hand, was a Chinese project some years ago that turned into a product.
So how is Intel going to compete with Cloudera, Hortonworks, MapR, IBM, EMC/Greenplum, et cetera? Intel Hadoop Distribution is having real-time queries just like Cloudera’s Impala. But instead of being a separate product, they will be embedded in Hive. Intel also looked at Cloudera Manager for inspiration around how to make Hadoop management easy. This part will however only be available for enterprise customers.
One of the main selling point will be performance. intel’s Hadoop will be fully optimized for Intel’s processors and SSD. Another selling point is security. Intel is launching project Rhino that will include more fine grained security and faster encryption. Further more Intel’s Hadoop is based on Yarn, the latest Hadoop branch, that comes with extra features like support for other than map-reduce frameworks and advanced resource management.
Finally unlike Cloudera, MapR and Hortonworks, Cloudera is a blue chip company with a global footprint and big name partnerships like Cisco, SAP, Terradata, Wipro, SAS, Dell, Redhat, etc.
Will it be enough to stop people from running Hadoop on large volumes of low-cost ARM chips? Only time can tell…