Google and Intel will explore new ways of using their respective technologies to deliver high-end cloud services for enterprises.
The two technology giants this week announced a strategic alliance that will focus on technology integrations and joint marketing efforts.
The partnership builds on an existing relationship between the two companies under which Google has been working with Intel to develop data center processor technologies, Google's head of technology partners Nan Boden announced on the company's Keyword blog.
The objective of the new alliance is to find the best way to combine Google's Cloud software capabilities with Intel's advanced hardware in areas like cloud cluster management, machine learning, security and the Internet of Things (IoT).
For instance, one core focus area is Kubernetes, Google's container cluster management technology. Intel already plays a big role in the Kubernetes ecosystem, by among other things, enabling organizations to run OpenStack as a Kubernetes workload, Boden said.
Engineers from both companies have also delivered code optimizations that enable Kubernetes workloads to run more efficiently on Intel hardware. Under the new alliance Google and Intel will work on further optimizing Intel hardware so it can run a broader range of Kubernetes workloads.
Similarly, under the new partnership Google and Intel will work on accelerating the performance of Google’s TensorFlow open source machine learning software library on Intel CPUs.
As part of the effort, the two companies will explore how to tweak TensorFlow so it leverages Intel CPU cores more efficiently and takes better advantage of the advanced memory allocation capabilities on the hardware.
The alliance also calls for the companies to create what Boden described as a secure platform for connecting Intel's IoT devices to Google Cloud Platform. The goal is to enable better collection and analysis of data from the IoT devices, especially those deployed in industries like manufacturing and retail.
The goals on the security front are somewhat less clear. According to Boden, Google and Intel will work on "enhancing security integrations between Intel hardware and [Google Cloud Platform] infrastructure that will further improve security for enterprise customers." She did not elaborate on what exactly is being enhanced and how.
The new partnership is part of an ongoing effort by Google to broaden its cloud footprint and its portfolio of offerings for enterprise customers.
Only earlier this week the company announced a somewhat similar partnership with Advanced Micro Devices. That alliance calls on Google to deploy AMD's fastest and most powerful server processor in its datacenter. Google has said it plans to use the processors to accelerate performance of its Google Compute Engine and Google Machine Learning services.
Google has said it will make the AMD CPU resources, which power applications ranging from complex medical and financial simulations to scientific analysis, available to cloud computing users around the world.