Google is making a major change to its cloud platform infrastructure that will help shore up one of the company’s biggest weaknesses relative to competitors like Microsoft and Amazon.
On Thursday, Urs Hölzle, the company’s senior vice president of technical infrastructure, unveiled eight forthcoming regions around the world for the company’s cloud services. The regions are all slated to launch in 2017 and will be comprised of multiple data centers for companies looking to run high-availability applications.
Having a broad distribution of cloud infrastructure is important to Google’s competitive chances. More and more countries are requiring that some types of data are stored in particular geographic locations. And even with high-speed networks, a large distance between where an application is hosted and where its users are located will lead to a slowdown.
Box CEO Aaron Levie says he doesn’t like it when his 1,400 employees use technologies that the company hasn’t standardized on, a rich irony considering the collaboration software maker spent its formative years ducking and dodging CIOs on its way into corporations. It was a frank admission from a CEO whose company has perhaps become the poster-child for shadow IT, the phenomenon in which employees or business units purchase software and devices without the consent of IT.