Why Google Cloud Platform may give Amazon fits

google cloud platform logo w:out text

Some cloud watchers (including some wise guys near and dear to Gigaom) have joked that the Google Cloud Platform should be taken with a grain of salt because it could be here today, but gone tomorrow, given Google’s tendency to launch, then pull, products. Some still haven’t recovered from the loss of Google Reader, for example, although to be fair, building a distributed massive cloud is a whole different animal than an RSS reader, but you get my point.

But, all kidding aside, it looks like GCP is not only here to stay but it’s giving Amazon Web Services a run for its money in a few key respects including per minute pricing (yay!), pre-warmed load balancing, live migration of virtual machines between regions and improved block storage. Gigaom Research analyst Janakiram MSV called the last of these a real game-changer in a post touting ten advantages of GCP over AWS.

Others emphasized this particular piece of the Google Cloud Platform availability news.

“Today we’re lowering the price of Persistent Disk by 60% per Gigabyte and dropping I/O charges so that you get a predictable, low price for your block storage device. I/O available to a volume scales linearly with size, and the largest Persistent Disk volumes have up to 700% higher peak I/O capability.”

David Mytton, CEO of Server Density said this an interesting way to handle billing. There will still be some wrinkles in figuring out IOPS throughput needed but generally Google has made pricing simpler and defined an upgrade path, he said.

For more on Gigaom Compute Cloud check out Gigaom Research.

Face it: there aren’t that many companies with the resources to build out a public cloud that could rival AWS in scope and features. Microsoft and Google are in that category. And Facebook if it showed any inclination in that direction.

Still, no one is standing still here. Amazon is known churning out feature and function enhancements fast and furious. And, it has shown a willingness to invest tons of money into a service while also cutting prices. That makes it a formidable foe  — and one with a pretty healthy head start in public cloud.

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