And I'm not talking about the five days of rain we are grateful to get this week...
The battle for hearts and minds and customers of cloud services is intensifying with news yesterday and today of price cuts and a big market entry.
First up is Google, announcing big price cuts for cloud computing capacity as well as efforts to entice developers to design services using their platform at a conference here in San Francisco.
Google has also intriguingly opined that cloud service costs should decline (or services increase) according to Moore's Law. I find that hard to get a grip around because I'm not sure that the underlying IT can keep up with Moore's Law (though many have predicted its demise before), and more importantly I don't know how much more energy and cost efficiency can be squeezed out of the data center infrastructure supporting the cloud.
Amazon's AWS is expected to make announcements in a similar vein later this week at a conference in...San Francisco. We'll see if pricing hits the headlines.
And notice that Microsoft is mentioned in the press as having to step it up on price competitiveness as well.
Lastly, here comes Cisco, with an announcement that they're going to get in the cloud services (another report here) game with $1 billion in data center investments over the next couple of years. I would think it hard to go from a low level of development to that rate in such a short time frame - the best developers who have big build programs take over a year to get a project done.
For utilities, we may be seeing the beginnings of a really big move by the IT industry towards a utility computing model: central data centers looking like power plants, with compute and storage capabilities priced just like utility service.
And for those looking to attract utility-scale data center development, Cisco represents a new opportunity. Unlike the other players who are increasingly expanding existing facilities rather than seeking new sites, Cisco will likely be open to new locations. Economic development teams, start your engines.