Google Cloud brings apps to the edge for glorious benefit of 5G

Google Cloud is determined to build an ecosystem that really works for service providers. It wants them to know its ecosystem offers a flexible cloud platform and a wide choice of software partners, in contrast to the "full stack" approach touted by other cloud players.

In Google's view, its ecosystem can provide what businesses will need to thrive following the pandemic, and it can help them realize what experiences and services will be possible in a 5G world.

That will involve using 5G networks to both help bring the cloud closer to businesses while making the most used and valued enterprise and network applications available everywhere.

Google's latest move in its broad telecommunications strategy is to bring its cloud ecosystem to the edge.

This should make it easier for service providers to see ways to deliver capabilities that will make 5G connectivity matter even more for enterprises.

In his blog post today, Amol Phadke, managing director of Telecom Industry Solutions at Google Cloud, announced that Google is bringing "more than 200 partner applications at the edge, from 30-plus launch partners, on Google Cloud." (See Google Cloud brings partners, applications to the edge.)

All of the major cloud providers have been partnering with and working with telcos in a variety of ways lately. And, at a high enough level, the three major cloud providers have made similar comments about enterprises' willingness to move everything to the public cloud (they won't, for a while).

Also, they've all acknowledged the delicate dance they must do to fully utilize service provider networks and relationships without (overtly) challenging those carriers for their existing enterprise costumers.

Phadke told Light Reading that Google recognizes that the myriad apps that enterprises want to use on service provider infrastructure necessitates multi-cloud and hybrid cloud strategies.

That's why its software platform, Anthos for Telecom, is designed to enable its partners to write one version of an application that can operate across multiple private and public cloud platforms. Google has even said out loud that it wants Anthos to be for network-centric applications what Android is for mobile phones.

With 5G, the nearest network edge might be close enough to provide some new, exciting enterprise applications. Service providers, Google and ISVs are all lining up for a taste and it remains to be seen who will extract the most value from these enterprise relationships.

With 5G-connected businesses, Google is eager to show enterprises an "enhanced understanding of consumers, and a view of what exceptional customer experience looks like through analytics," Phadke said.

To do that, its cloud platform will need to be at every available edge, and working in close partnership with service provider infrastructure, "which is the backbone of everything we do."

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Phil Harvey, Editor-in-Chief, Light Reading

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