Sun backs Web 2.0 startups

Sun backs Web 2.0 startups

New programme will give startups discounts on a range of products and services

Sun Microsystems has put its weight behind up and coming web 2.0 companies with the launched this week of a new initiative designed to provide UK startups with discounts on Sun technology and services.

The Sun Startup Essentials programme, which was originally launched in the States, will help eligible companies purchase a range of discounted products and services, including Sun Fire x64 servers and Sun Fire servers with CoolThreads technology, according to the firm.

Startups under the scheme can also rent discounted web hosting infrastructure from Sun partners Layered Technologies, NaviSite and NTT Europe Online, and gain access to free open source software including Sun's own.

"They will also get free technical support – the idea is to help startups make good decisions up front so as their needs go up they can sustain higher traffic," said Sun's Juan Carlos Soto.

“The ubiquitous nature of the Internet and the growing acceptance of hosted models of software means that software companies with great applications can attract a global customer base almost as soon as they start trading,” said Rob Steggles of NTT Europe Online. “But it is essential that businesses backing themselves to succeed have a secure, reliable and scalable IT and hosting infrastructure in place from the outset.”

Supporting Web 2.0 companies is vital to the future success of Sun, because such companies are likely to be big users of IT in the future, according to David Mitchell of analyst Ovum.

"The Startup programme is part of Sun's core DNA," he added. "If these companies don't become huge consumers of IT in the future Sun's growth will not happen.