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Google's latest price cuts may spark new trends in the storage industry

By Donna Donnowitz
May 22, 2015

Google recently began advertising a 70 percent single instance discount for customers with fault tolerant workloads capable of being stored on its Preemptible VM. This is a great opportunity for businesses looking for an alternative to storing data that is non-essential to daily workflow on-site, according to Datacenter Dynamics. In addition, Google aims to entice new customers by offering a free one-month trial and a $300 credit.

"Google's cut is a great businesses looking to store data off-site."

This price cut also comes with implications for rival services Amazon AWS and Microsoft Azure - Google pointed out in its announcement that the price cut would put the service at 40 percent below the cost of the competition. As a result, responses from Amazon and Microsoft are likely just months away. In the meantime, IT teams have an opportunity to decide how to best take advantage of the next wave of cheaper storage.

Customers can now easily invest in idle processing power
Key to Google's ability to slash its storage prices by a wide margin are its massive amounts of idle processing power. By limiting access to customers with preemptible workloads and a bit of extra tolerance when it comes to availability, Google can manage to offer its storage at a seriously reduced rate. This move may spark a new trend in major providers looking to capitalize on underutilized resources, especially if customers are willing to trade-off some reliability for the sake of a killer deal.

Historically speaking, Google's competitors are likely to follow in the tech giant's footsteps. Cloudwedge pointed out that this trend played out consistently over last year as each cloud provider looked to outdo each other's lowest price point. AWS, for instance, is currently operating at a margin of 17 percent, meaning the Amazon has plenty of room to leverage its idle processing power at a much lower price. How and when Amazon and Microsoft respond is still a mystery, but it seems to only be a matter of time before the market grows even more customer friendly.

IT teams can leverage price drops by mixing technology
Chances are that companies won't get by running all of their workloads on Google's low-cost VM, but that's not surprising given the diversity of storage needs faced by most IT teams. Bryan Che, general manager of the Red Hat Cloud Business Unit, emphasized that point in a recent interview with TechRepublic.

"When you take a look at the enterprise mix, they're dealing with everything - physical servers, virtual servers, public clouds." Che said. "They've got different data centers, different data sets, different applications, different technology stacks, applications that they need to continue running."

Why manage every workload when public storage keeps getting cheaper?Why manage every workload when public storage keeps getting cheaper?

This also means IT teams will have to be flexible and create if they want to sidestep the hassles that can arise when implementing a mixed storage strategy. Providing access to important data to employees off-site can be a challenge if the information is too important to store on the public cloud - in cases like these, a remote console server can help IT teams fill the gaps left by mixing and matching their storage options.

Perle's wide range of 1 to 48 port Perle Console Servers provide data center managers and network administrators with secure remote management of any device with a serial console port. Plus, they are the only truly fault tolerant Console Servers on the market with the advanced security functionality needed to easily perform secure remote data center management and out-of-band management of IT assets from anywhere in the world.


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