Event Report: #GoogleNext17 On Path To Enterprise Ready

Google Cloud Takes Key Steps To Enterprise Class

Over 10,000 customers, prospects, partners, Google developers, and employees gathered in San Francisco's Moscone West Conference Center for Google's flagship enterprise event. Of note, Alphabet CEO, Eric Schmidt, book ended the event by highlighting the $30 billion capital infrastructure investment into the overall Google Cloud Platform.   The conference brought together Google's ecosystem and highlighted Google's commitment to invest in the enterprise market.  A few proof points on enterprise ready were on hand:

VIDEO: The 60 Second LowDown On #GoogleNext17

20170308 The 60 second LowDown on #GoogleNext17 from Constellation Research on Vimeo.

  • Google showcases enterprise cred on stage. Customers such as Disney, eBay, Home Depot, HSBC, and Verizon were on hand to share how they made the move to Google Cloud.  Verzion shared plans to move 115,000 employees to G Suite by year's end.  HSBC's CIO Darryl West noted how their data scientists found the tools easy to use. Disney's CTO, SVP Michael White highlighted Google's machine learning capabilities in their road to AI.  Home Depot's SVP of Technology Paul Gaffney talked about how Google handled "the smoothest Black Friday ever".  Colgate-Palmolive shared how they migrated 28,000 employees on to Gsuite.

    Point of View (POV):
    While customers started first using Google Cloud Platform for G Suite, big data, analytics, machine learning, translation, and BigQuery, success has led to land and expand strategies.  Constellation sees customers and prospects moving legacy workloads in a "lift and shift" fashion.  Organizations fearing Amazon's cannibalization of their market and those unsure of Microsoft's ability to deliver on AI have begun pilots on GCP as well as sought choices in partners as Google beefed up their enterprise capabilities.  At the leadership summit, many customers and prospects expressed significant interest in setting up POC's.
  • SAP expands HANA distribution with Google.  SAP's Bernd Leukert appeared on stage with Diane Greene to announce the official certification that Google Cloud Platform (GCP) technology could run the SAP HANA database and other mission critical SAP applications.  Certification is critical for customers as SAP and Google will ensure that specific performance enhancements for SAP apps and HANA are maintained.  SAP intends to have HANA Cloud Platform working on Google Cloud in the next two months.

    The partnership shows how Google is starting to attract large enterprise workloads and enterprise customers onto the platform.  The deal also addresses key privacy concerns as SAP remains the custodian of the data in the cloud allowing customers to meet data governance and compliance requirements.  Longer term, SAP must decide whether to operate its own data centers or rely on Google as their partner.  SAP gains a key ally in delivering much needed compute power and distribution of SAP's HANA technologies.  SAP will also resell Google's productivity platform, G-Suite, into it's 345,000 customers.
  • Google improves  support offerings.  New smart tiering engineering support plans, Rackspace partnership, and Pivotal partnership bolster support.  Three new engineering support plans were announced for Google Cloud based on response times.  Level one at four to eight hour response  was set at $100 per user per month.  Level 2 for one hour response was set at $250 per user per month, and Level 3 for one  for a 15 minute response at any hour of the day was set at $1500 per user per month.

    Constellation sees the new support plans as key to driving value for clients based on their need and usage of engineering services.  The Rackspace relationship helps customers with better managed support options.   Pivotal's partnerships gives customers running mixed clouds better support with Customer Reliability Engineering.

The Bottom Line: Google Taking Steps In The Right Direction For Customers

Just two years ago, analysis of Google's enterprise efforts showed very little enterprise credibility.   The sales team barely understood enterprise, the products were rife with transient talent, and customers had no input into the product direction.  With the recent house cleaning in the management and product teams, a commitment to enterprise by y Google’s executive team (i.e. Eric Schimdt, Sundar Pichai, Diane Greene), and a host of new enterprise class alliances and partnerships, Google is rapidly building a worthwhile option for clients across the five entry points to cloud maturity (see Figure 1)

  1. Migrate workloads.  From test and dev, to key production workloads, organizations can start reducing data center costs and driving down the cost of compute power.
  2. Migrate enterprise.  While certain systems will remain on-premises or in a mix of compute power environments, over time, organizations will shift their enterprise systems onto the cloud.
  3. Access SaaS Apps.  While workloads and enterprises are making shifts, new capabilities in apps will come from a surround strategy.
  4. Manage hybrid cloud.  Organizations will operate multiple clouds on multiple deployment options and this hybrid environment will require governance and management.
  5. Innovate with the cloud.  While the cloud will provide many core capabilities to clients, innovation will come from application development on platforms in the cloud.

As customers use the cost savings in the cloud to fund innovation, expect Google to emerge as an option among the 5 Amigos (Amazon, Microsoft, IBM, Google, Oracle) for full stack cloud capabilities (i.e. IaaS, PaaS, DaaS, SaaS).    Customers are drawn to the machine learning, translation, maps, and analytics opportunities.
However, Google will have to make more acquisitions such as Kaggle, AppBridge, and Apigee in order to round out key enterprise requirements.  For these reasons, customers and prospects should watch carefully what partnerships and alliances emerge in the next six to twelve months.  Google is taking steps in the right direction but must move quickly in order to keep its momentum as a worthwhile enterprise class option.

Figure 1. The Five Entry Points To Cloud Maturity

Your POV.

Looking at cloud options?  What do you think of Google Cloud Platform?  Will you rely on Google for your digital transformation efforts?
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