A brief overview of the Application User metric
Oracle has largely standardized on the Application User metric across many of its application programs, be they the home-grown E-Business Suite or technologies added to the portfolio through an acquisition. While Application User is not the only way to license Oracle applications, it is the most common user based metric. To their credit, as they have acquired companies like Hyperion, Agile, JD Edwards, etc. that historically had a variety of confusing user based license metrics, Oracle has simplified things by allowing customers to migrate legacy metrics to Application User.
In many cases, this removes the burden of a customer having to keep track of which users are provisioned, for example, as a “Power User” versus which users only provisioned as a “Read-only,” and so on. An Application User is simply any user given access to the licensed application, regardless of whether they are acting as an administrator, or are only performing a single task.