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Google Updates Cloud Platform to Include Hadoop Storage Connector

Last year Google Cloud platform emerged as a viable and strong alternative to Amazon Web Services and in the first few weeks of 2014 the platform has received various updates. These updates include: a new storage connector for Hadoop, App Engine 1.8.9 release, and improved landing page documentation for its Cloud Platform sample projects repository in GitHub.

Google Cloud Platform Releases Billing API

One of the key benefits that the cloud brings to developers is the promise of reducing the cost of hosting applications. "Pay per use" is mentioned by every cloud vendor, but that by itself is not a magic wand by which the bills get reduced. A typical pattern is to observe monthly bills, see which services ended up being costly, then look at re-architecting bits and pieces of the application. Google Cloud Platform, which is fast becoming a strong alternative to Amazon Web Services, wants to make the task easier by providing a billing API that provides programmatic access to your daily Google Cloud Platform usage and cost estimates.

Google Compute Engine moves to General Availability

Google Compute Engine is now Generally Available to Developers. GCE offers Linux Virtual Machines, where you can host your applications, powered by Google's infrastructure. The service was first announced at I/O 2012 and has seen consistent announcements in terms of features, performance benchmarks, security and a host of network infrastructure capabilities over the year.

Google Cloud Platform Simplifies Mobile Back-end Development

Google Cloud Platform is positioning itself as a major player to help mobile developers get off the block fast. While the platform was complete in terms of its Compute Engine (IaaS), App Engine (PaaS) and cloud services (Storage, Big Query, etc), developers still had to do the work of connecting the pieces. If you were a mobile developer who wanted a quick starter application in the Google cloud, you had to figure out the pieces. Similarly, if you were looking to expose your app engine applications as a bunch of REST-based services that would scale to heavy loads and work across multiple mobile devices, you had to work on your application to do so.

Google Compute Engine Expands Availability

In a world that is currently dominated by Amazon Web Services (AWS), Google has taken the next steps to announce itself as a solid alternative to AWS. The Google Compute Engine (GCE), an Infrastructure-as-a-Service product that allows running Virtual Linux Servers at Google scale was announced in June of last year and was available by invite only. The gates have been thrown open a little bit with Google announcing its expanded availability, price cuts and newer features.