72% of IBM mainframes now support mobile and Web applications, new Macro 4 study reveals

…but some users are worried that the additional mobile and Web workload could drive up mainframe costs and increase system response times.


72% of IBM mainframe users polled in a new survey have revealed that their organizations’ mainframe computers now support Web or mobile applications, with a further 8% expecting their mainframes to do so within the next three years. However, many mainframe specialists are concerned that the extra processing workload from Web and mobile transactions could drive up running costs and adversely affect response times for end users, according to the research from software and services company Macro 4, a division of UNICOM® Global.

62% of the 60 mainframe users polled in the survey said new Web applications had been developed to use back-end mainframe systems or data and 53% said existing mainframe applications had been Web and mobile enabled.

While 97% of the survey sample believe the mainframe is a strong platform for supporting web and mobile applications, 38% are concerned about the potential for higher mainframe usage costs or CPU upgrade charges due to the extra workload from supporting these newer areas. Similarly, 28% are worried about the possibility of slower response times for end users due to the increase in mainframe transaction processing from mobile and the Web.

“Overall, 93% of people we questioned said they believe it’s important for mainframes to support new Web and mobile applications if they want to stay relevant and useful. But amongst some organizations there’s a very real concern that these new online applications could have a negative impact on costs or performance if they are not managed effectively,” explained Lynda Kershaw, Marketing Manager at Macro 4, which ran the survey of IBM mainframe users in October 2014 at the GSE UK Conference held by GUIDE SHARE Europe (GSE), Europe's association for IBM computer and software users.

“There’s no denying that the huge rise in Web and mobile transactions has increased mainframe workloads - just think of the volumes handled by online hotel booking systems or financial services sites that provide quotes over the Web,” said Kershaw. “So it’s up to systems management teams to ensure that performance of the mainframe infrastructure is optimized - both at the system and application level - in order to maintain reliable service levels and keep costs in check.”

It could be that when new online systems are integrated with mainframe applications, they highlight and expose inefficiencies in the way that they run and use processing power, continued Kershaw:

“Mainframe application performance management - also known as performance tuning - can help to identify and correct these errors in order to deliver faster responses and better service levels. More efficient code should also result in the same workload being handled using less processing power, so you can minimize usage-based software licensing charges. And it would reduce the pressure to invest in additional processing capacity.”

About Macro 4

Macro 4, a division of UNICOM Global, develops software solutions to improve the performance of business-critical applications and processes. Macro 4’s solutions for information delivery, data management, fault analysis and performance management are easy to use, fast to implement and deliver value quickly in even the most complex IT environments.

Macro 4’s fault analysis and testing solutions help users to deploy new mainframe applications faster, and correct software faults in record time. The company's performance management solutions keep core business systems running at optimum levels and prevent unplanned application downtime. Easy-to-use Eclipse and web interfaces accelerate individual and team problem solving and are attracting a new generation of developers to the mainframe.

About UNICOM® Global

UNICOM Global consists of more than thirty-five (35) corporate entities encompassing a wide range of businesses across all geographic regions. With its corporate headquarters in Los Angeles, California, to offices in Illinois, Massachusetts, Maryland, New Hampshire, North Carolina, New Jersey, Texas and Virginia, throughout EMEA in the UK, Ireland, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Belgium, Switzerland and the UAE, and across Asia/Pacific with locations in India, Singapore, Korea, Thailand, Taiwan and the Philippines. UNICOM Global offers deep in-house resources and flexible IT solutions to our partners worldwide. UNICOM Global focuses on acquiring and integrating mature and growing mid-cap NASDAQ, London Stock Exchange AIM and German publically-traded companies in technology, financing, IT, real estate, and business services. Please visit any or all of our websites for additional information about the services, products and solutions that UNICOM Global offers:   UNICOM Global - Assets, capital and investment management   UNICOM Systems - IBM Mainframe software products   UNICOM Government (formerly NASDAQ: GTSI) - Government IT solutions   UNICOM Engineering (formerly NASDAQ: NEI) Appliance platform2   solidDB – In-memory relational database management system   U.S. Robotics - Data communications products   Memeo - Enterprise-grade Secure File Sharing for the cloud   Firetide - Wireless technology solutions for security and transportation   DETEC - Document composition products   SoftLanding Systems - IBM i software products   illustro - z/OS and z/VSE software products   Macro 4 (formerly LONDON: MAO) - Document Management products   iET Solutions - ITIL ITSM software products   Eden - Domino Notes and Open Systems products - Hardware, Software, Outsourcing and Professional Service   UNICOM Capital - Business and Financial Services