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Breaking Analysis: Google Rides the Cloud Wave but Remains a Distant Third


>> From The Cube Studios in Palo Alto and Boston, bringing you data driven insights from The Cube and ETR, this is Breaking Analysis with Dave Vellante >> Despite it's faster growth and infrastructure as a service, relative to AWS and Azure, Google Cloud platform remains a third wheel in the race for cloud dominance

Google begins its Cloud Next online event starting July fourteenth in a series of nine rolling sessions that go through early September Ahead of that, we want to update you on our most current data on Google's cloud business Hello everyone, this is Dave Vellante, and welcome to this week's Wikibon Cube insights, powered by ETR In this session, we'll review the current state of cloud, and Google's position in the market We'll drill into the ETR data and share fresh insights from our partner and the Cube community

So let's get right into it You know, Google, if you think about it, was actually very early into the cloud game Google's 2004 IPO was a milestone event for the tech industry, and in you know many ways, it really marked the end of the post-dotcom malaise It signaled the beginning of a new era of innovation During this time, Google was busy building out its massive, global cloud infrastructure, probably the largest in the world, with undersea cables, global data centers, and tools like the Google file system, and of course Bigtable

But it took many years for Google to pull its head out of its ad serving butt and realize the opportunity to sell its cloud services to global enterprises Bigtable, Google's no-sequel database, for example, was released in 2005, but it wasn't until 2015 that Google made this service available to its customers That was the same year Google brought in VMware founder, Diane Greene to begin its enterprise journey in earnest Now Google, they have a dizzying array of services in compute, storage, database, networking, IT ops, dev tools, machine learning, AI, analytics, big data, security, on and on and on Name a category and it's likely that Google has something in it as a cloud service

But Google, to this day, still hasn't figured out how to sell to the enterprise It really struggles to find the right formula So, as you know, Google brought in Thomas Kurian from Oracle, to figure this out Of course Kurian is, he's going to go with Google's strengths like analytics and database, but it has to have differentiation, so it comes up with unique pricing models like sustained discounts, which automatically apply discount for heavy usage, as opposed to forcing users to buy reserved instances such as what AWS does You know Google is more aggressive partnering around multi-cloud, for instance, with Anthos, and it's smartly open-sourced Kubernetes really to minimize the importance of, physically, where workloads run

The bottom-line, however, is that these moves are necessary for Google to compete because it lags behind the leaders And it has a long way to go before it's going to be satisfied with its cloud business Let's look at the IaaS market in context Now, I don't want to say it's all gloom and doom for Google Far from it

Earnings for Q2, they're going to start rolling out later this month, but this chart shows our latest estimates of IaaS and PaaS for the big three cloud players Now, I got to caution you, as I did before, other than AWS, which reports very clean numbers each quarter on IaaS and PaaS, we have to estimate Azure and GCP revenue because they bundle in other things I'll give an example Google reports its overall cloud numbers which include G Suite Microsoft reports a category they call intelligent cloud

Now that includes public, private clouds, hybrid, sequel server, Windows server, system center, GitHub, enterprise support and consulting services And Azure, the IaaS and PaaS numbers are also in there too So what we have to do is to squint through the earnings reports and the 10 Ks and try to get a clean IaaS and PaaS figure for these players, and that's what we show here Now there's really two points that we want to stress with this data First, on a trailing 12 month basis, the big three cloud players now account for nearly 60 billion dollars in IaaS and PaaS revenue

And this 60 billion dollars, on a weighted average basis, is growing in the mid 40% range So well on its way to being a 100 billion dollar business Just for these three firms And as we've reported, that's eating directly into the on-premises infrastructure install base, which is a flat to declining market And that trend is going to play out in a big way this decade

We've predicted that public cloud is going to out pace on-prem infrastructure by more that 1800 basis points over the next 10 years, from a spending standpoint Now the second point that I want to make relates to Google IaaS and PaaS growth We peg it at greater than 70%, based on public statements, reading the 10 Ks and ETR data, which we'll discuss in a moment So, very healthy growth, but from a much smaller install base than, or base than AWS and Azure But in our view it's not enough, because AWS and Azure are so large and strong still, growth wise, that we feel Google is going to remain a distant third, really indefinitely

Nonetheless, a lot of companies would be thrilled to have a four billion dollar cloud business and there's certainly good news in the data for Google So let's look at some of that survey data Now, as we've reported in the past, Google pushes G Suite very hard, as part of its cloud story, and it leads often times with G Suite in its messaging You know, but to us that's never really been that compelling So let me start with some anecdotal data from ETR

ETR runs a regular program, they call it VENN, and in the VENN they invite clients into a private session to listen to named CIOs talk about their experience with vendors and overall spending intentions It's a facilitated session And we've had ETR's Eric Bradley on as a guest who directs the VENN program, and does much of the facilitation, and here's a statement from a recent VENN session quoting a CIO at a midsize Telco, that I think sums it up nicely He says Google's G Suite is fine and dandy, but I don't see that truly as an enterprise solution And frankly, it's still not of the quality of an Office application, talking about Microsoft

All in all I really like the infrastructure-as-a-service and the platform-as-a-service components that GCP had And I thought they were coming along very very well in that space Now, the reason that I share this is because the IT buyers that we speak with, you know they're very serious about exploring Google They want options other than Azure and AWS and they see Google as having great tech and as a viable alternative So let's talk about GCP and the enterprise

We looking, when we look into the ETR data for the most recent survey, which ran in June and early July, GCP is showing strength in one really important bellwether category, the giant public and private companies These are the largest firms in the ETR dataset and often point to secular trends Now, before we get into that, let's look at the picture for GCP using ETR's net score up methodology This is fundamental to the ETR approach, and remember, each quarter ETR goes out and asks its respondents, are you planning to spend more or less? In its July survey, ETR focuses on second half spending The next chart captures results across Google's entire portfolio

So here's the breakdown for, for Google across all sectors 14% of the respondents are adopting new, that's the lime green 39% plan to increase spending in the second half versus the first half, that's the forest green Then there's a big fat middle, that's flat, and you see that in the gray area And the 7% are spending less, with 2% replacing, that's the pinkish and dark red, respectively

So, I would say this result is mixed, in my opinion Yeah, it's not bad, don't get me wrong, and we've, we'll see once ETR comes out of its quite period, how this compares to Azure and AWR, so remember, I can only share limited data until ETR clients get the data and have time to act on it But this calculates out to a net score of 44%, which is respectable, but frankly not overly inspiring So let's look across the GCP portfolio using the ETR taxonomy and see what it looks like This chart shows the net score comparisons across three different surveys, October 19, April 20, and July 20

So reading the bars left to right, you can see Google's strong suit really is machine learning and AI Container platforms are also very strong, as are functions, or server-less, and databases, very solid, we'll talk more about that in a minute You know, video conferencing was just added by ETR and sure it pops up with the work from home Cloud is actually holding firm when compared to October of last year But surprisingly, analytics is looking a bit softer

And ETR for the first time added G Suite with, it shows a 26% net score, first time out, which is pretty tepid I mean not very impressive at all But overall, the picture looks pretty good for Google So let's dig further into the giant public and private sector, that bellwether I talked about And let's peal the onion a bit and look closer at the results from the largest companies in the dataset

So this chart shows the giant public, plus private organizations So it would include like monster public companies but also large companies like a Cargill or a Coke Industries, if in fact they responded in this survey And you can see, in that all important sector, it's a story of a lot of green with hardly any red, so quite a positive sign for Google within those bellwethers Here's what I think is happening here Is these large, and often far flung organizations, have realized that they have multiple cloud vendors, and they're asking their senior IT leadership to bring some consistency and sanity to their cloud strategies

So they look at the big three and say, okay, what's the best strategic fit for each workload? So they might say for instance let's use AWS for core IaaS, let's use Azure for productivity workloads, and we'll sprinkle some Google in for machine learning and related projects So we do see some real strength in some of the larger strongholds for Google, although interestingly ETR sort of tells me that there's softness in the midsize and smaller companies that have powered AWS for so many years And of course this, with Google's base, but compare that to AWS and AWS is much stronger in those smaller companies, start-ups and the like, and of course COVID's the wild car in all this You know, we have to take that into account, and we will with Sagar Kadakia, who's ETR's director of research in the coming weeks But I want to look at Google in the all important database category

So before we wrap, let's look at database You remember, Google's playing catch up in the cloud and its marketing takes a more open posture around partners and things like multi-cloud and you know you can contrast that with AWS for example, but look, make no mistake, Google wants you data in their cloud, and that's why database is so strategic and so important Look, it's the mother of all lock specs All you got to do is look at Oracle and their success Now, as we've reported many times, there's a new workload emerging in the cloud around this idea of the modern data warehouse

I mean I don't even like that term anymore, data warehouse, because it sounds just so static But anyway, any rate, I'm talking about workloads that bring database, machine learning, AI, data science, compute and storage along with visualization tools to deliver real-time insights and operational analytics Database is at the heart of everything here Win the database and everything else falls into place Now, Google has six or seven database products and one of the most impressive, in my opinion, is BigQuery

I mean, for those who have followed me over the years you know I love the technology behind Google's banner, but BigQuery is where much of the action is around this new workload that I'm talking about So, let's look at, deeper at Google's position in database This chart shows one of my favorite views On the Y axis is the net score, or spending momentum, and on the X axis is market share or pervasiveness in the ETR dataset The chart plots various database companies and their position within the all important giant public plus private sector

So these are the companies in the ETR survey that are the largest, and oftentimes, again, are a bellwether And you can see Microsoft and Oracle and AWS have very strong presence on the horizontal axis Mongo, MongoDB looms large, MemSQL, they just raised 50 million dollars this past May, MariaDB just raised another 25 million this month You can see Couchbase and Redis, they show up, and they're on my radar I'm learning more about those companies

Folks, database is hot VC's are pouring money in and it's something that's very important to the Cube community to look at And of course you see Google in the chart, with a strong net score, you know, but not the type of market presence that you see from the other big cloud players In fact, they've pulled back a little somewhat in this last ETR survey So despite some bright spots in the enterprise in terms of spending momentum, just not quite enough presence yet

Oh, by the way, look who's right there with Google I know I sound like a broken record, but Snowflake is everywhere You'll find them in AWS, you'll find them in Azure and on GCP Now remember, Snowflake is only about one tenth the size of Google's IaaS and PaaS business But it has stronger spending momentum than all the big guys, and it continues to creep its way to the right in terms of market share or presence

You know, but Google has great database tech and BigQuery is at the heart of its strategy to support analytics at scale, and automate the data pipeline BigQuery's very well designed, it started as a cloud native database, it's based on server-less, it's highly scalable, and it's very cost-effective In fact, ESG, enterprise strategy group, wrote a report comparing the TCO of the cloud databases Let me pull that up and show you Now the report was commissioned by Google, so I got to caution you there

But it was very well done in my opinion by a guy named Aviv Kaufmann, and you can see here it compares BigQuery with the other cloud databases, and of course, you know, BigQuery wins, got the lowest TCO, but again I thought the report was really detailed and well researched I have no doubt that Snowflake has an answer for the big brown bar, which is on-demand cloud cost I think ESG was making certain assumptions, maybe worst case assumptions, about the need to over-provision resources for Snowflake, which I'm sure ESG can defend, but I'll bet dollars to donuts that Snowflake, you know, has an answer to that or a comeback I'm going to ask them But the point I want to make here is that BigQuery was designed from day one, again, as a cloud-native database

We've been talking about that a lot It's very efficient and is going to be competitive So you can see, there are some bright spots in the enterprise, for Google Okay, let's wrap up Now, having called out some of the positives, and there are many, Google is still not getting it done in the enterprise, in my opinion

I certainly would not say too little too late, but I would say they spotted the competition a huge lead, and the only reason is Google just didn't act on the opportunity staring them in the face, within the enterprise, fast enough, and they finally woke up But enterprise sales are, they're really hard Thomas Kurian, for all his experience, is coming from way, way behind with regard to the enterprise go to market, systems and processes, pricing, partnerships, special deals for the enterprise Google's still learning how to sell the business outcomes and is relying far too much on its technology chops, which, while impressive, are not going to win the day without better enterprise sales, marketing, and ecosystem integration Now I feel like for years, Google has said to the enterprise market, give me heat and I'll add the wood

Meaning we have the best tech, go ahead and use it That strategy just doesn't work in the enterprise Kurian knows it and I suspect that's why Google's showing some strength within these large, giant public and private companies They're probably applying focused sales resources to nail customer success with some of its top accounts where they have a presence, and then once they nail that they'll broaden to the market But they got to move fast

We'll learn more about Google's intentions and its progress over the next few, next few months as they try their online event experiment, and of course we'll be there providing our wall to wall coverage Remember, these Breaking Analysis episodes, they're all available as podcasts ETR is shortly exiting its quiet period, this week, and will be rolling out the data, so check out etrplus I publish weekly on wikibon

com and siloconeanglecom and as always please comment on my LinkedIn posts, I really appreciate the feedback This is Dave Vellante for the Cube Insights, powered by ETR Thanks for watching everyone We'll see you next time

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