Google announces eight new cloud regions, new support model

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Google has announced a big expansion of its cloud, with new regions planned for Mumbai, Singapore, Sydney, Northern Virginia, São Paulo, London, Finland and Frankfurt … and those are just the ones it plans to turn on during 2017. The company’s also planning to announce more regions in the future.

Perhaps more importantly, Google is also putting some consulting muscle behind its cloud, announcing it’s created new “Customer Reliability Engineering” roles “designed to deepen our partnership with customers. CRE is comprised of Google engineers who integrate with a customer’s operations teams to share the reliability responsibilities for critical cloud applications.”

“This integration represents a new model in which we share and apply our nearly two decades of expertise in cloud computing as an embedded part of a customer’s organization.”

Google’s cloud veep Brian Stevens says, “We’ll have more to share about this soon.”

But back to those new bit barns. Google says they’re needed because a billion people rely on services delivered from its cloud, and more capacity will mean lower latency. The company looks to have put as much effort into connectivity as it has into the data centres themselves: its shiny new map (see top of story or here for those of you on our mobile site) shows network links between bit barns around the globe.

The company is also starting to emphasise the role it thinks Kubernetes can play in the hybrid cloud, pointing out that the new version 1.4 now allows clustered implementations that span “multiple clouds, whether they are on-prem, on a different public cloud vendor, or a hybrid of both.”

Google’s gradually turning up the heat on Kubernetes, emphasising its origins at Google and therefore its cloud’s capabilities as a fine place to run the container orchestration code. Throw in the new support offering and its emphasis on using Google’s expertise to run your cloud, and Google’s position as a cloud for cloud-native and containerised apps is becoming clearer.

But the main thing that changes after this announcement is that Google now has reach to match Amazon Web Services, Azure and SoftLayer. But it’s not a killer blow: AWS on Wednesday announced a new region in Paris, France. ®

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