November 27, 2012

Google Fills Out Cloud Portfolio, Drops Prices

Tiffany Trader

Watching the competition between public cloud providers is like following a multi-party ping pong game – there’s a lot of back and forth. On Monday Google delivered a counterhit to rival Amazon, revealing upgrades to its infrastructure as a service (IaaS) offering, Google Compute Engine, as well as reduced storage pricing and enhanced European datacenter support.

When Google Compute Engine debuted in June, it supported just four standard instance types. In the coming weeks, Google will be rolling out 36 additional instance types, and pricing of the four original instances will be cut by 5 percent.

Google Product Management Director Jessie Jiang summarizes the new instance categories thusly:

  • High Memory Instance – High performance instances tailored for applications that demand large amounts of memory.
  • High CPU Instance – Reduced cost option when applications don’t require as much memory.
  • Diskless Configurations – Lower cost options for applications that do not require ephemeral disk and can exclusively utilize persistent disk.

Google is also decreasing the cost of its standard storage offering by over 20 percent, from $0.12 per GB down to $0.095 per GB (for the first terabyte). And for customers who are willing to trade data availability for a lower price point, Google is announcing Durable Reduced Availability (DRA) storage, at a cost of $0.07 per GB for the first TB.

Yet another new service, Object Versioning, is designed to help protect against accidental overwriting or deletion. And Persistent Disk Snapshotting, which lets users create backups that they can transfer around Google datacenters, is also in the works.

Google is actively seeking to expand its European presence. Google App Engine, Google Cloud Storage and Google Cloud SQL will be accessible from Europe-based datacenters with Google Compute Engine soon to follow.

Two weeks ago, the search giant announced enhancements to its MySQL database, Google Cloud SQL, including faster performance, larger databases (100GB), and EU availability.

The latest upgrades to Google’s cloud portfolio were unveiled the day before Amazon kicked off its first annual user conference, AWS re:Invent, in Las Vegas. Google Compute Engine is still in preview mode and no official launch date has been released by the company.

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