Google App Engine has logged an important milestone in its history by moving out of preview and has now become a fully supported Google Product. The last few months have not been the easiest for the platform-as-a-service after App Engine price increases. But the team listened to the developers, was focussed on the tasks and with regular releases kept the momentum going. The latest release is not just out of preview but packed with enhancements.
The announcement at the App Engine blog not just mentioned the graduation to a fully supported Google Product but also underlined the fact that App Engine continues to remain a popular platform with more than 100 billion+ monthly hits.
As of November 7, the new pricing structure will be in effect. Also updated are the terms of service and acceptable use policy. If you have a paid application on the High Replication Datastore, you are also covered by the 99.95% SLA.
There is good news for Python devs in this release. Python 2.7 is supported and a full MapReduce framework in experimental mode has been released. Java developers have various enhancements made to the Memcache API, Datastore callback support and in Capability Testing. For full list of changes, refer to the Python and Java Release Notes.
While some developers remain critical of the changes that Google has made to its pricing, we are beginning to see encouraging posts from developers who have adapted their application and brought down their pricing significantly. A post from Greg Tracy, whose $75 / year app we covered earlier, has put in a fairly detailed report of the changes that he made to bring down the pricing of his application from $6/7 per day to $0/day.
It has been a terrific 3+ years for Google App Engine and it has been one of the key platforms that developers have used to move their applications to the cloud. Now that it is out for preview and with new terms of service, SLA, it remains to be seen if more enterprises now consider it as a viable option.