Google announces fourth North American cloud region
Thu 11 May 2017
Google Cloud has launched a new cloud region, the company’s fourth in North America and eighth worldwide.
The new Google Cloud region in Northern Virginia is comprised of three zones, and offers compute, big data, storage and networking services. Developers can now choose to deploy applications closer to customers for low latency and improved efficiency. This is intended to improve user experience for clients on the East Coast, as the previous closest location was in South Carolina.
Noting the benefit to customers of Google’s investments in infrastructure, Dave Stiver, Product Manager for the Google Cloud platform, said, “Google’s networking backbone transforms compute and storage infrastructure into a global-scale computer, giving developers around the world access to the same cloud infrastructure that Google engineers use every day.”
Preliminary performance testing in the new region shows that customers in major cities on the East Coast may experience 25-85% reductions in RTT latency when data is stored and accessed in Northern Virginia rather than in South Carolina or Iowa. Cities tested for latency reductions include New York, Boston, Washington D.C., Montreal and Toronto.
Future additions to the Google Cloud network include regions in Montreal, Sao Paolo, and California.
Google is currently third in market share for cloud customers, lagging behind Amazon Web Services, which leads with approximately 40% of the market and Microsoft Azure with close to 30%. However, Google is gaining on competitors, with strategic acquisitions, such as Apigee and Kaggle as well as high-profile cloud customers like Snapchat parent company Snap, Inc., Spotify, and Coca-Cola.
Google CEO Sundar Pichai said that the outlook for Google Cloud is very good. On a conference call with analysts he said, “In 2016 we made huge strides building out our product offerings across all areas of Google Cloud Platform. We routinely hear from customers that we have now moved well beyond table stakes, and we have truly differentiated offerings in four key areas: data analytics and machine learning, security and privacy, tools for application development and the ability to create connected business platforms.”
The Google Cloud division also announced that it is now making its largest virtual machines available to the general public. The virtual machines can be made in either predefined or custom types and offer up to 64 virtual CPUs and 416 GB of memory. The 64 vCPU machines are available on the Broadwell, Haswell and Skylake Intel host machines.