Recap of Google Cloud Next ‘17

Maven Wave had the privilege of attending and sponsoring Google Cloud Next ‘17 in San Francisco, CA last week. It was a jam-packed week of exciting announcements from Google, meeting new people, and expanding our expertise of Google Cloud. There were over 100 exciting announcements made and more learnings than could possibly be covered in a blog post, but we put together some of the key highlights from the event.

Google Next '17

The biggest takeaway of Next ‘17 was that Google is serious about the enterprise and making an extraordinary big bet on Google Cloud. During the keynote by Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google, he stated that “in many ways, to me, Google Cloud is a natural extension of our mission to make information accessible and useful – we are just doing it for business.” Eric Schmidt, Executive Chairman of Alphabet, echoed that message stating that Google has the money, means, resources, and determination to bring its vision for the enterprise cloud to a global scale.

Google is making significant investments in enhancing the technology, the partnership ecosystem, and cloud security. These investments are creating an exciting competitive differentiator for Google Cloud in the public cloud space. Technology Business Research analyst Meaghan McGrath agrees that Google is pursuing the enterprise market in a unique way. “The things they are doing with customer reliability engineers and site reliability engineers have been proven to help Google products, and transforming that to a customer-facing program is smart,” McGrath said.

The Maven Wave team at Google Next ’17.

Day One Highlights

In the Day One keynote, we heard from Google executives including Diane Greene, Sundar Pichai, Eric Schmidt, and Fei-Fei Li, about what Google Cloud offers today and what their vision is for the future. One of the highlights was when Google brought new enterprise customers on stage to discuss how they are leveraging Google Cloud to do amazing things — this included executives from Disney Interactive, Verizon, Colgate, The Home Depot, HSBC, and eBay.

Verizon announced that they are moving more than 150,000 employees to G Suite, a major win from rival Microsoft. Verizon’s VP & CTO, Alin D’Silva, discussed how employees “love the simplicity and the intuitiveness of the product and the ease of use.” Other important announcements from day one include:

  • Cloud Machine Learning Engine has reached GA status. Now all organizations can train and deploy their own models into production in the cloud.
  • Google made incremental improvements to its Cloud Vision API, including the expansion of API metadata and the enhanced optical character recognition.
  • A new cognitive capability that is the first of its kind, Cloud Video Intelligence API private beta. Search and discover video content by providing information about entities using nouns or verbs inside video content.
  • Google Cloud and SAP forge partnership to develop enterprise solutions.
  • Google’s growing partner ecosystem includes key investment areas that will help partners like Maven Wave accelerate growth and drive customer success.
  • A new pricing model was rolled out to further enhance GCP customer support, charging customers flat fees per user per month, based on the level of support each user needs.
  • Google announced the acquisition of Kaggle—the world’s largest community of data scientists and machine learning enthusiasts.

Verizon announces their move to G Suite.

Day Two Highlights

Urs Hölze opened day two’s keynote by announcing three new Google Cloud Platform regions—California, Montreal, and the Netherlands. Attendees were also treated to a demo of Cloud Spanner, Google Cloud’s globally distributed, high-performance database service.

There were several major announcements about enterprise technology that will drive what’s next in computing. Some of the product releases in security, analytics, machine learning, and G Suite tools include:

  • Google-designed security chip, Titan—used by Google to establish hardware root of trust, allowing Google to securely identify and authenticate legitimate access at the hardware level.
  • Identity-Aware Proxy (IAP) beta—IAP provides secure application access from anywhere, deploys with integrated phishing-resistant Security Key, is easier to set up than end-user VPN, and restricts access by user, identity, and group.
  • Data Loss Prevention (DLP) beta—find and redact sensitive data stored in GCP, invigorate old applications with new data-sensing “smarts,” and use predefined or customized detectors.
  • Cloud Functions beta—a serverless environment for creating event-driven applications and microservices that lets you build and connect cloud services with code.
  • Hangouts Meet and Hangouts Chat—Hangouts Meet is a new video meeting experience designed to make meetings frictionless. Up to 30 people can join a meeting within seconds, no downloads or browser plugins required. Hangouts Chat is a new way to communicate in Hangouts with dedicated, permanent rooms that help connect cross-functional enterprise teams.

Day Three Highlights

The conference wrapped up on Friday with a keynote dedicated to developers that focused on Google’s commitment to open source. The session brought together members of the startup community to discuss how they’re building the next wave of innovative products and services with Google Cloud.

  • Google announced a Machine Learning Startup Competition for promising early-stage startups that are using machine learning in innovative ways.
  • A new Google Cloud Platform free tier was announced, which now includes 15 services.

Maven Wave is excited to be a part of the Google Cloud ecosystem and we see big things ahead for our clients who are leveraging Google Cloud. For more information, don’t hesitate to contact us.

March 14th, 2017

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