Google Making its Move

December 6th, 2013 by

Google has announced that its infrastructure as a service (IaaS) offering, Google Compute Engine (GCE), is finally ready for full launch. 

Compute Engine

The company first made news about the cloud service over 18 months ago.  The question was always “What was Google waiting for?”  According to Google what they were really waiting for was testing to ensure they wouldn’t take some of the beatings that Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure have for SLAs and outages. Google Claims:

Google Compute Engine is Generally Available (GA), offering virtual machines that are performant, scalable, reliable, and offer industry-leading security features like encryption of data at rest. Compute Engine is available with 24/7 support and a 99.95% monthly SLA for your mission-critical workloads. We are also introducing several new features and lower prices for persistent disks and popular compute instances.”

Among other things, Google Compute Engine now supports most popular Linux distributions, transparent maintenance with live migration and automatic restarts.  They have increased the core count up to 16 cores per instance and claim their persistent disk service provides consistent performance along with much higher durability than local disks.

Google also has got on board a good number of customers to provide some validation of the service. “In the past few months, customers like Snapchat, Cooladata, Mendelics, Evite and Wix have built complex systems on Compute Engine and partners like SaltStack, Wowza, Rightscale, Qubole, Red Hat, SUSE, and Scalr have joined our Cloud Platform Partner Program, with new integrations with Compute Engine.” According to Google’s website.

The Google Platform has the following services:

Google Platform

With over 1000 Google engineers working on Google Cloud you can expect some continued updates and new feature sets.  A lot of the industry has wondered if Google can catch up with AWS, Microsoft, RackSpace, and others.  I would agree that new companies trying to compete with the big cloud providers is somewhat of a lost cause. However, if anyone can really push the competition and come in late to the fight, its Google.  I have spent the last couple days playing with Google cloud and like many of Google’s other products they have done a very nice job of connecting all things Google.  For example the sign up process was painless. Google has integrated Google+ and all other Google services for a transparent and seamless experience within Google.  I was pleasantly surprise how nice of an experience it was.

Cloud Console

According to Barak Regev, Head of EMEA Cloud Platform at Google:

“GCE is the first major milestone, but there’s more to come,” said Regev. “For example, we’re heavily innovating around big data and PaaS, too. Eventually, I think we’ll integrate PaaS, IaaS and big data into one beautiful solution.”

According to ComputerWeekly.com “And as for the accusation that its products are too “vanilla”, Regev said: “Many cloud providers offer a lot of variations of their solution, but we hear plenty of feedback about reliability and I believe our story is compelling in terms of providing that consistent performance. I predict that will result in an amazing uptake of our platform by many customers – be they startups, bricks-and-mortar enterprises or individual developers.”

It will face a tough fight along the way, but for customers that should be good news. It suggests prices will continue to fall and services will keep improving across the public cloud market.

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