Google Counters AWS Pricing With Per Second Cloud Platform Billing

Today’s topics include Google’s new per-second billing offering for cloud customers; Mozilla’s release of Firefox Quantum; Dell EMC updating its newest servers for Azure and SQL Server; and Hewlett Packard Enterprise releasing high-performance flash storage for midsize businesses. 

Barely 10 days after Amazon announced a per-second billing option for customers of its Amazon Web Services cloud platform, Google has responded with a plan that extends per-second billing to almost all Google Cloud Platform services.

The new option is effective immediately and available on all the various virtual machine configurations that Google offers and virtual machines running Windows Server, SUSE Enterprise Linux Server and Red Hat Enterprise Linux.

Google Group Product Manager Paul Nash paradoxically informed Google cloud customers not to get too excited by it, as enterprises already signed up for Google's existing per-minute billing option will see very little savings by moving to a per-second model—as small as a fraction of 1 percent.

The real savings will come from moving from a per-hour billing model to the per-minute billing for cloud workloads. Moving from per-hour to per-minute can be especially beneficial for applications that get short-lived, big spikes in traffic.

Mozilla is claiming that its new Firefox 57 browser, hailed as Firefox Quantum and currently available as a beta, is two times faster than its Firefox 52 release that debuted in March.

Mozilla has been incrementally adding features to Firefox over the past year to help speed up the browser, in an effort to provide better performance than Google's rival Chrome. The April Firefox 53 release added the Quantum Compositor feature, which helps reduce the number of browser crashes due to graphics issues.

Firefox 54 accelerated page loads with the introduction of the multi-process web content rendering technology called Electrolysis. Mozilla has also made use of the open-source Rust programming language to build a new Cascading Style Sheet engine for Firefox Quantum.

Since the 1980s, Dell and EMC—and now Dell EMC—have maintained hugely important partnerships with Microsoft. Nearing the end of 2017 and moving into the new year, the relationship between Dell EMC and Microsoft is going to get even more strategic for both parties.

Announced Sept. 27 at the Microsoft Insight conference in Orlando, Fla., Dell EMC is expanding its support of Microsoft data center environments with major updates across its server lines: the XC Series, Dell EMC Cloud for Microsoft Azure Stack and Dell EMC Ready Bundle for Microsoft SQL Server.

This cooperation “addresses key IT transformation opportunities and use cases” from hyper-converged infrastructure to hybrid cloud and data analysis. Server upgrades will add much more functionality—especially in data management controls and security—using Microsoft-based IT than has ever been available previously.

Hewlett Packard Enterprise has been busy this week releasing a number of new infrastructure items aimed at cost-conscious small and midrange customers.

Those products include a flash portfolio update with a more powerful storage array, HPE Nimble Storage flash arrays and a new all-flash HPE SimpliVity 380 Gen 10 hyperconverged system.

HPE also released a new StoreFabric M-Series switch that provides high performance for Ethernet-based storage network connectivity, and a new secure and cost-effective WiFi package for businesses with under 100 employees.

The SimpliVity 380 targets midsize businesses that want the agility and economics of the cloud with the performance and protection of an on-premises solution. The HPE Nimble Storage Predictive Flash platform includes predictive analytics that are capable of addressing over 85 percent of storage issues before they occur.