E-Trade Financial dumped Sun for Linux-on-Intel in 2002 and found that the new machines were faster and more reliable. Before the switch the online brokerage ran a data center that cost $25 million to operate, and this one costs only $3 million. E-Trade’s tech budget this year is $180 million, down from $450 million in 2000, yet the firm serves 40% more customers, manages nearly three times the assets and generates 70% more revenue.
TIt’s hard to argue with the logic – when a company like eTrade canspend less on IT, grow its business and improve reliability, why would they chooseto do otherwise? There either needs to be a great untold story about why this approach doesn’t make sense out there or there must be a lot of software executives in a pretty bad mood. I’m betting on the latter.