Managed.IT - issue 65

THE TRUE COST OF CLOUD LAID BARE Technology research company Dark Matter has launched Clouded II, a feature-length documentary sponsored by Hewlett Packard Enterprise that exposes the economic and environmental costs of cloud. Released to mark the launch of Clouded.TV, a new online channel supplying content about the cloud, Clouded II includes insights from a range of experts on the inefficiencies and spiralling cost of cloud computing as well as the huge amounts of energy, water, heat and waste associated with data storage and data hoarding. Featured expert Gerry McGovern said: “The growth of data is scary. By 2035 we will be producing about 2,000 zettabytes of data. Typically, you store 10% of that, and need over a billion servers. You would need to cut down 20 trillion trees to print one zettabyte. There are only 3.5 trillion trees on the planet. We need to think about what we truly need.” CIVO GIVES SHORT SHRIFT TO EGRESS FEES CONCESSION Mark Boost, CEO of cloud-native service provider Civo, has reacted with scorn to Microsoft’s announcement that it is removing egress fees for customers that move data from Azure to an alternative cloud provider or data centre, following similar moves by AWS and Google Cloud. He said: “Don’t be fooled by Big Tech’s apparent rush to abolish egress exit fees. Azure is racing on the heels of AWS and Google Cloud to remove charges only for data transfer out of the cloud to ensure compliance with the fast-approaching European Data Act.” He added: “If you look deeper, the change comes with strings attached. Azure is only removing egress fees for storage data for exiting customers, with charges still applying for egress from other Azure services, and customers have to cancel all Azure subscriptions before claiming the credit. Clearly, in the mind of the hyperscalers, flexibility still comes at a price.” Egress fees are just one complaint against the ‘Big Three’ hyperscalers. In a recent Civo survey of 500 IT professionals that use AWS, Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud, 64% said they had experienced a rise in cloud costs in the last 12 months; 47% said they were considering a move away from the cloud because of the expense; and 37% said that the cloud had failed to live up to its promise of costeffectiveness. In addition, 42% said they found it hard to predict their cloud bill every month, with 28% reporting that they had received an unexpectedly large bill for cloud services. More than half (57%) of hyperscaler users say they are now taking steps to manage or reduce their cloud service costs. Boost said: “The cloud is broken. That is the stark truth we all need to face up to. The hyperscalers have not delivered on their lofty promises of low costs at scale that they set out more than a decade ago. Instead, users are left with high prices, overly complex solutions and ‘black-box’ proprietary tech that make it very difficult to move anywhere else. When you are in, you are in! This situation can be hugely damaging, especially for smaller businesses, making it very difficult for them to build a bespoke, affordable approach to cloud that suits their needs.” ... FORMULA E PARTNERS WITH GOOGLE CLOUD Formula E, the world’s first all-electric motorsport, has signed a multi-year technology partnership with Google Cloud in what it hopes will be the first of many such deals with technology leaders. The partnership builds on a relationship that began last summer when NEOM McLaren Formula E Team driver Jake Hughes set a new indoor land speed record of 218.7km/h with the help of a gen AI ‘DriverBot’ created by Google Cloud for Formula E’s GENBETA race car development programme. This harnessed real-time data from Hughes’ car, alongside historic race data, to help smash the existing Guinness World Record by more than 50 km/h. The new partnership will enable Formula E to use Google Cloud infrastructure, gen AI tools and data and analytics technologies to make further technological advances through GENBETA; to create highly targeted marketing campaigns based on analysis of fan behaviour, preferences and demographics; and to build pathways into motorsports and science for young women through Formula E’s FIA Girls on Track programme. ... FEES EAT UP CLOUD BUDGETS More than half (53%) of EMEA organisations exceeded their budgeted spend on cloud storage in 2023, with half of all cloud storage costs in EMEA going to data access and usage fees rather than capacity, reveals the 2024 Global Cloud Storage Index from Wasabi Technologies. Nonetheless, EMEA companies still value cloud storage services, with 91% planning to increase their cloud storage budget in 2024 and 92% planning to increase the amount of data they store in the public cloud. Andrew Smith, Senior Manager of Strategy and Market Intelligence at Wasabi Technologies, said: “Organisations worldwide are increasing their use and budgets for public cloud storage solutions, and Europe is no exception. Like the rest of the world, European cloud storage NEWS 4 01732 759725 NEWS Mark Boost