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"We Won't Lock You In, We Promise": Google's Anthos Platform
Google touts the avoidance of vendor lock-in as a key benefit of its new Anthos platform. Anthos is solution stack for managing applications, and it can run in the cloud or on-premises. It includes features such as container orchestration, service management, and configuration and policy management.
In a live-streamed presentation on 10 April 2019, Urs Hölzle, Google’s SVP of Technical Infrastructure, proclaimed that Anthos is “based on open source, [and] safe for many years to come. It's not a single vendor choice.”
By emphasizing that Anthos is “not a single vendor choice,” Google wants to position itself as a solution provider that won’t lock its users into using only its own cloud ecosystem.
This strategy contrasts sharply with the strategies of AWS and Azure, each of whom provides users with their own sets of handy tools – all of which are dependent upon their proprietary cloud ecosystems.
Does Google truly hope to position itself as an in-the-middle solution provider for the long term, or does it intend to use Anthos as a gateway drug, getting enterprises hooked and primed for a full entry into Google Cloud down the road?
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Google has announced a premium support plan for its cloud customers, promising a 15-minute response to the highest severity tickets. Google’s cloud has long struggled with enterprise customers – especially when compared to giants Microsoft and AWS – and this announcement is the latest incarnation of Google’s push to better serve a critical constituency.
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Microsoft’s announcement that server-side encryption with customer managed keys for Azure Managed Disks is now available is welcome news for security-minded public cloud customers. Managing one’s own keys in a cloud environment can be an important step in complying with regulatory requirements, and this new feature should open Azure Managed Disks to a wider group of customers who may have held back for this reason.
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