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Day one wrap at Next: Multicloud stars as Google Cloud opens up its strategy

Google had been inching into the hybrid cloud market over the past year. As it did so, it scarcely made an attempt to enter the growing multicloud arena.

But what a difference a day makes! In the day one keynote today at Google Cloud Next in San Francisco, new Chief Executive Thomas Kurian made several announcements that demonstrate how Google Cloud is enabling the open multiclouds that are sure to dominate enterprise computing in the next decade.

Just as important, Google Cloud now has the industry’s most open portfolio for addressing the heterogeneous serverless environments that will take root in many enterprise multiclouds in coming years. And it is making deep investments in an ecosystem of open-source data analytics platforms. Before more than 30,000 customers, partners, developers and others at Next, Kurian presented his organization’s new multicloud strategy through several key announcements.

Opening workload management across the multicloud

Google Cloud now has the most open multicloud environment among leading cloud players. Its Anthos announcement underlines the vendor’s commitment both to integrating its customers’ on-premises resources with compute, storage, data and other resources in its public cloud, but also with equivalent resources in competitors’ public clouds.

Anthos — which evolves the Cloud Services Platform hybrid-cloud software that Google announced last year — remains a 100 percent software-based solution. Generally available now, it is an open distributed infrastructure for spanning multiclouds.

It enables cloud-native applications to run unmodified on the hardware platform of the customer’s choice. It lets customers run an app anywhere unmodified, either on existing on-premises hardware platforms or in various public clouds, not limited to Google Cloud Platform. Anthos runs on Google Cloud Platform with the managed Google Kubernetes Engine service, and in on-premises data centers with GKE On-Prem.

To round out its new multicloud solution, Google also announced Anthos Migrate. The new solution, which is in beta, automigrates virtual machines and applications, unmodified, from on-premises platforms or from other clouds, directly into containers in Google Kubernetes Engine. At Cloud Next, Google announced that more than 30 partners are using Anthos Migrate to help customers digitally modernize their information technology assets. These include:

  • Multicloud partnersCisco will use Anthos Migrate to help enterprise customers rapidly migrate legacy apps to Anthos. For mutual customers, Cisco will also use Google’s new migration tool to integrate apps and workloads with data center, networking, and security technologies in Cisco’s own multicloud portfolio (i.e., HyperFlex, ACI, Stealthwatch Cloud and SD-WAN). VMware is integrating Anthos with its Vsphere cloud-computing virtualization platform and in its high-performance Velocloud SD-WAN. This will enable mutual VMware/Google customers to run low-latency virtualization applications over multiclouds. VMware announced plans to integrate Google Apigee with Dell Boomi for flexible API management over multiclouds.
  • System integrator partners: Accenture, Arctiq, Atos, Cognizant, Deloitte, HCL Technologies, NTT Communications, Tata Consultancy Services, Wipro and WWT are all using Anthos Migrate to modernize and extend customer applications.
  • Independent software vendor partners: Google announced that more than 20 independent software vendors have already committed to integrating their software with Anthos.
  • Hardware partners: VMware, Dell EMC, HPE, Intel and Lenovo have each committed to delivering Anthos on their own hyperconverged infrastructure for their customers. Intel is partnering with Google to develop a reference implementation hardware stack for Anthos.

Opening serverless across the multicloud

Google Cloud now supports the most open serverless application development environment among the leading public cloud vendors. As explained in the keynote, Google’s Cloud Run announcement places serverless at the forefront of open programming frameworks for cloud-native applications, in several respects:

  • Write serverless code once, run anywhere across the multicloud: Google Cloud Run’s support for Knative enables serverless functions to be easily ported to any Kubernetes cluster. These capabilities greatly expand the runtime reach for this new generation of event-driven, stateless and containerized microservices in the multicloud.
  • Develop more powerful serverless applications in the multicloud: Google Cloud Run’s new language runtimes, in conjunction with its new open-source Functions Framework, give developers more hooks for writing powerful serverless functions that are portable across Kubernetes clusters.
  • Run serverless apps more efficiently in the multicloud: The fully managed Cloud Run serverless compute platform frees IT managers from needing to provision, configure, scale and manage the servers that are executing these applications. It also automatically scales serverless compute resources up or down within seconds and ensures that users only pay for the compute, storage and other resources they actually use.
  • Expand support for secure serverless in the multicloud: Google has announced beta of a new connector that lets developers pull data securely from existing virtual private clouds into serverless apps in Google Cloud Platform. while providing the option of persisting this data in Cloud Memorystore and other platforms from the GCP Marketplace.
  • Implement continuous integration/continuous deployment for serverless apps developed for the multicloud: As part of the Cloud Run announcement, Google also discussed its partnership with DatadogNodeSourceGitLab and StackBlitz, who will provide tooling for serverless application programming, deployment and monitoring within DevOps workflows.

Opening big data analytics across the multicloud

Google’s commitment to open source is longstanding and comprehensive. It also helps to explain why the vendor has been so determined to launch initiatives such as Kubernetes, Knative and Istio through the open-source community.

Open-source big-data analytics platforms are now the foundation for many cloud-computing applications. Google has acknowledged this fact by announcing managed services for deployment of several leading open-source platforms in its public cloud. These include partnerships with Confluent (Apache Kafka), DataStax (Apache Cassandra), Elastic (ElasticSearch), InfluxData (InfluxDB), MongoDB (MongoDB), Neo4j (Neo4j) and Redis Labs (Redis).

In launching this “integrated open-source ecosystem,” Google is attempting to make it easier for customers to implement a wide range of open-source data environments within its public cloud. Google Cloud will offer fully managed services operated by these open-source partners that are tightly integrated into its public cloud. It will ensure a unified experience for managing, billing and support across these services. It will provide customers with a single console interface for managing apps, including the ability to provision and manage the services. Customers will be able to manage and log support tickets in a single window and not have to deal directly with different providers of the underlying data platforms.

Opening the multicloud ecosystem to partner-driven industry and line-of-business applications

Google Cloud showed that it’s serious about becoming a business solution provider, based principally on building strong partner programs to address industry and line-of-business requirements.

Google announced a new program to develop industry-specific “digital transformation solutions” with industry-focused partners. It is targeting financial services, healthcare, retail, manufacturing, communications, media and entertainment, and public sector opportunities. It is embedding its rich artificial intelligence in most of these solutions to deliver smarter, more adaptive, more contextual solutions for a wide range of business requirements.

Finally, Google also announced expansions to its partner programs focused on line-of-business applications in marketing analytics and the “internet of things.”

For further information and insights on these and other announcements at Google Cloud Next 2019, check out interviews on theCUBE, SiliconANGLE’s mobile livestreaming studio, taking place this week from San Francisco.

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