Google has announced the launch of a cloud region in South Africa, the first of its kind on the African continent.
The Alphabet-owned company also announced that it is currently building Dedicated CloudInterconnect sites that link users’ on-premises networks with Google’s grid, in Nairobi (Kenya), Lagos (Nigeria), and South Africa (Capetown and Johannesburg). This is part of the tech giant’s move to provide full-scale cloud capabilities for its customers and partners in Africa.
Google also intends to use Equiano, its private subsea cable that connects the African Continent and Europe power the South African site. Under development since 2019, three years ago, Equiano had since then made four landings in Togo, Namibia, Nigeria, and South Africa.
The Google cloud region gives users the leverage to deploy cloud resources from specific geographic locations, and access several services including cloud storage, compute engine, and key management systems. The new launch indicates that South Africa will be joining Google’s global network of 35 cloud regions and 106 zones globally, with the new announcement coming after the recent preview launch of regions in Malaysia, Thailand, and New Zealand.
Google Cloud Africa director, Niral Patel, in a statement said:
“We are excited to announce the first Google Cloud region in Africa. The new region will allow for the localization of applications and services. It will make it really easier for our customers and partners to quickly deploy solutions for their businesses, whereby they’re able to leverage our computer artificial intelligence or machine learning capabilities, and data analytics to make smarter business decisions as they go forward”.
Patel added that the new region and interconnect sites will allow its computing sites to get closer to its sites, in the process allowing its customers to choose where to consume the products from.
“What we’re doing here is giving customers and partners a choice on where they’d like to store their data and where they’d like to consume cloud services, especially in the context of data sovereignty. This allows customers to then store the data in the country should they choose to do so… I guess for me the most important element is that it gives customers the element of choice,” Patel said.
Google’s decision to use South Africa as a base for its cloud region was predicated by the demand for cloud services together with the market’s potential.
The company is also on the move to launching more markets in Africa as demand for its product offerings increases.
“We continue to evaluate market demands as we work with our customers to see them transform and grow in these markets. We continuously make these assessments and it is on that basis that we continue to invest,” Patel said.
South now houses four major cloud storage providers on the continent with the new launch by Google.
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