The big question with Sun Microsystems is whether or not it can make it through the rough times that the technology industry is being hit with. Currently, Sun is in the business of two, somewhat different products, software and hardware. This immediately burdens Sun with the competition of multiple competitors, where most producers in this industry compete against only one.
Sun's forte in the past has been there ability to build high quality servers, which are the backbone to many businesses, proved during the dot.com era. Today, many of Sun's competitors have learned that by strategically networking small, and much cheaper systems together, that they can create a network of computers that is almost as powerful as Sun's servers. Now, you may ask why would a large organization not want the more powerful computer, or server. The answer is simple. Sun's servers are expensive, and so is the maintenance on them.
Companies such as Dell Computers have strategically nailed the economy of commodity based computing, where they focus on pleasing the customer. They are now creating a computer for anyone from large corporations, to personal home computer users. Dell is turning itself into one of Suns' major competitors, and they know exactly what the customer wants, an inexpensive but functional product.
Sun is also competing against Intel. Intel builds the microprocessor chip that Microsoft runs their operating system off of. This is where things get very tricky for Sun. They are trying to compete against Intel by trying to build a more efficient chip of their own. At the same time they are trying to compete against Microsoft by building their operating system, Solaris. Almost every business today is running on Microsoft's operating system, and the reason is that almost everyone knows how to use Microsoft, whereas next to nobody...