Our top picks from Google Next 2017

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Google Next ’17, held March 8-10 in San Francisco, was an amazing event and will set the pace for the public Cloud for 2017. From a long list of new features and announcements, through to Beta release and more, the Sakura team were there to experience the news in real time.

Here are our favourite announcements from the Google Cloud team:

  1. Identity-Aware Proxy (IAP) for Google Cloud Platform (Beta) – Identity-Aware Proxy lets you provide access to applications based on risk, rather than using a VPN. It provides secure application access from anywhere, restricts access by user, identity and group, deploys with integrated phishing resistant Security Key and is easier to setup than end-user VPN.
  2. Data Loss Prevention (DLP) for Google Cloud Platform (Beta) – Data Loss Prevention API lets you scan data for 40+ sensitive data types, and is used as part of DLP in Gmail and Drive. You can find and redact sensitive data stored in GCP, invigorate old applications with new sensitive data sensing “smarts” and use predefined detectors as well as customize your own.
  3. Key Management Service (KMS) for Google Cloud Platform (GA) – Key Management Service allows you to generate, use, rotate, and destroy symmetric encryption keys for use in the cloud.
  4. Security Key Enforcement (SKE) for Google Cloud Platform (GA) – Security Key Enforcement allows you to require security keys be used as the 2-Step verification factor for enhanced anti-phishing security whenever a GCP application is accessed.
  5. Google-designed security chip, Titan – Google uses Titan to establish hardware root of trust, allowing Google to securely identify and authenticate legitimate access at the hardware level. Titan includes a hardware random number generator, performs cryptographic operations in the isolated memory, and has a dedicated secure processor (on-chip).
  6. BigQuery Data Transfer Service (Private Beta) – BigQuery Data Transfer Service makes it easy for users to quickly get value from all their Google-managed advertising datasets. With just a few clicks, marketing analysts can schedule data imports from Google Adwords, DoubleClick Campaign Manager, DoubleClick for Publishers and YouTube Content and Channel Owner reports.
  7. Cloud Dataprep (Private Beta) – Cloud Dataprep is a new managed data service, built in collaboration with Trifacta, that makes it faster and easier for BigQuery end-users to visually explore and prepare data for analysis without the need for dedicated data engineer resources.
  8. Python for Google Cloud Dataflow in GA – Cloud Dataflow is a fully managed data processing service supporting both batch and stream execution of pipelines. Until recently, these benefits have been available solely to Java developers. Now there’s a Python SDK for Cloud Dataflow in GA.
  9. Stackdriver Monitoring for Cloud Dataflow (Beta) – Google has integrated Cloud Dataflow with Stackdriver Monitoring so that you can access and analyze Cloud Dataflow job metrics and create alerts for specific Dataflow job conditions.
  10. Google Cloud Datalab in GA – This interactive data science workflow tool makes it easy to do iterative model and data analysis in a Jupyter notebook-based environment using standard SQL, Python and shell commands.
  11. Cloud Dataproc updates – Google’s fully managed service for running Apache Spark, Flink and Hadoop pipelines has new support for restarting failed jobs (including automatic restart as needed) in beta, the ability to create single-node clusters for lightweight sandbox development, in beta, GPU support, and the cloud labels feature, for more flexibility managing your Dataproc resources, is now GA.
  12. Cloud SQL for Postgre SQL (Beta) – Cloud SQL for PostgreSQL implements the same design principles currently reflected in Cloud SQL for MySQL, namely, the ability to securely store and connect to your relational data via open standards.
  13. Microsoft SQL Server Enterprise (GA) – Available on Google Compute Engine, plus support for Windows Server Failover Clustering (WSFC) and SQL Server AlwaysOn Availability (GA).
  14. Cloud SQL for MySQL improvements – Increased performance for demanding workloads via 32-core instances with up to 208GB of RAM, and central management of resources via Identity and Access Management (IAM) controls.
  15. Cloud Spanner – Launched a month ago, but still, it would be remiss not to mention it because, hello, it’s Cloud Spanner! The industry’s first horizontally scalable, globally consistent, relational database service.
  16. SSD persistent-disk performance improvements – SSD persistent disks now have increased throughput and IOPS performance, which are particularly beneficial for database and analytics workloads.
  17. Federated query on Cloud Bigtable – Google has extended BigQuery’s reach to query data inside Cloud Bigtable, the NoSQL database service for massive analytic or operational workloads that require low latency and high throughput (particularly common in Financial Services and IoT use cases).
  18. Cloud Machine Learning Engine (GA) – Cloud ML Engine, now generally available, is for organizations that want to train and deploy their own models into production in the cloud.
  19. Cloud Video Intelligence API (Private Beta) – A first of its kind, Cloud Video Intelligence API lets developers easily search and discover video content by providing information about entities (nouns such as “dog,” “flower”, or “human” or verbs such as “run,” “swim,” or “fly”) inside video content.
  20. Cloud Vision API (GA) – Cloud Vision API reaches GA and offers new capabilities for enterprises and partners to classify a more diverse set of images. The API can now recognize millions of entities from Google’s Knowledge Graph and offers enhanced OCR capabilities that can extract text from scans of text-heavy documents such as legal contracts or research papers or books.
  21. Compute Engine price cuts – Continuing Google’s history of pricing leadership, they have cut Google Compute Engine prices by up to 8%.
  22. Committed Use Discounts – With Committed Use Discounts, customers can receive a discount of up to 57% off our list price, in exchange for a one or three year purchase commitment paid monthly, with no upfront costs.
  23. Free trial extended to 12 months – GCP has extended their free trial from 60 days to 12 months, allowing you to use your $300 credit across all GCP services and APIs, at your own pace and schedule. Plus, Google have introduced new Always Free products – non-expiring usage limits that you can use to test and develop applications at no cost. Visit the Google Cloud Platform Free Tier page for details.
  24. Google AppEngine Flex (GA) – Google announced a major expansion of their popular App Engine platform to new developer communities that emphasizes openness, developer choice, and application portability.
  25. Cloud Functions (Beta) – Google Cloud Functions has launched into public beta. It is a serverless environment for creating event-driven applications and microservices, letting you build and connect cloud services with code.
  26. Firebase integration with GCP (GA) – Firebase Storage is now Google Cloud Storage for Firebase and adds support for multiple buckets, support for linking to existing buckets, and integrates with Google Cloud Functions.
  27. Cloud Container Builder – Cloud Container Builder is standalone tool that lets you build your Docker containers on GCP regardless of deployment environment. It’s a fast, reliable, and consistent way to package your software into containers as part of an automated workflow.
  28. Community Tutorials (Beta) – With community tutorials, anyone can now submit or request a technical how-to for Google Cloud Platform.
  29. New data center region: California – This new GCP region delivers lower latency for customers on the West Coast of the U.S. and adjacent geographic areas. Like other Google Cloud regions, it will feature a minimum of three zones, benefit from Google’s global, private fibre network, and offer a complement of GCP services.
  30. New data center region: Montreal – This new GCP region delivers lower latency for customers in Canada and adjacent geographic areas. Like other Google Cloud regions, it will feature a minimum of three zones, benefit from Google’s global, private fibre network, and offer a complement of GCP services.
  31. New data center region: Netherlands – This new GCP region delivers lower latency for customers in Western Europe and adjacent geographic areas. Like other Google Cloud regions, it will feature a minimum of three zones, benefit from Google’s global, private fibre network, and offer a complement of GCP services.
  32. Google Container Engine – Managed Nodes – Google Container Engine (GKE) has added Automated Monitoring and Repair of your GKE nodes, letting you focus on your applications while Google ensures your cluster is available and up-to-date.
  33. 64 Core machines + more memory – Google have doubled the number of vCPUs you can run in an instance from 32 to 64 and up to 416GB of memory per instance.
  34. Internal Load balancing (GA) – Internal Load Balancing, now GA, lets you run and scale your services behind a private load balancing IP address which is accessible only to your internal instances, not the internet.
  35. Cross-Project Networking (Beta) – Cross-Project Networking (XPN), now in beta, is a virtual network that provides a common network across several Google Cloud Platform projects, enabling simple multi-tenant deployments.

There were many more announcements that may impact our existing and future Google Cloud customers, please contact us for more details. In the meantime, the Sakura team are already getting busy working with these latest features from Google and look forward to delivering your initiatives on the very best Cloud platform.