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What Do the Google Outages Mean for Cloud Services?

Just a few days after one outage, Google Inc. suffered another on Monday morning. Google News went down for an hour and a half, affecting users in the United States, Australia, India and the United Kingdom.

The service disruption on Thursday morning caused a full 5 percent drop in Internet traffic, making us all realize how much we need, really need, the Internet search giant’s services. Today’s issue wasn’t of the bring-the-Internet-to-its knees variety, but it’s left people wondering what’s going on over there in Mountain View.

This is the latest in a service of service disruptions to cloud-based services that have left people wondering whether Web-delivered apps are ready for business use. Google’s e-mail services also went down for 2.5 hours back in February, for instance. Microsoft Azure experienced a high-profile darkening earlier this year. And last August, Google Apps and Gmail were inaccessible for several hours, while Apple MobileMe service went down as well.

Of course, Google offers a public cloud. There are other services that come with SLAs, routed on private network connections, which could provide businesses the security they need to move away from site licenses. Even so, with the media attention firmly focused on any Google piffle, these outages could create a negative perception of cloud apps for the enterprise.

“It doesn’t reflect badly on cloud computing; but it highlights the fears that people have about the move to cloud computing,” John Spooner, an analyst with Technology Business Research, told eWeek.


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