By Shirley Siluk / CIO Today. Updated September 12, 2014.
Google has kicked off yet another program aimed at helping to develop the next big thing in tech: Google Cloud Platform for Startups. The program offers early-stage tech companies $100,000 in credit for Google's Cloud Platform services, along with 24/7 support and technical architecture review help from Google's engineers.
The new offering was announced Friday by Urs Hölzle, Google Fellow and senior vice president of technical infrastructure, during the Google for Entrepreneurs Global Partner Summit. According to a Google blog post, the program is aimed at helping startups "take advantage of the cloud and get resources to quickly launch and scale their idea."
Google Cloud Platform for Startups is open to startups less than 5 years old that haven't previously received Cloud Platform credits and are working with an approved accelerator, incubator or venture capital fund. To be eligible, companies must also have less than $5 million in funding and less than $500,000 in annual revenues.
Keeping Startups 'Focused on Code'
"We want developers to focus on code; not worry about managing infrastructure," Julie Pearl, Google's director of developer relations, said in a blog post Friday. The startup program gives early-stage tech companies access to "the same infrastructure platform we use at Google," she added.
According to Google, more than 4 million applications are being built on its Cloud Platform. Among some of the high-profile tech companies that have used Google's cloud services to move from development stage to commercial product are the photo-sharing service Snapchat, the non-profit educational site Khan Academy and the peer-to-peer car-sharing service Getaround.
Google has partnered with a large number of startup-supporting organizations across the globe for this program, including the U.S.-based Y Combinator, Europe-focused Seedcamp, Code for America and Gaza-based Gaza Sky Geeks. It says startups whose funders are not currently partners should contact Google to get them added to the program.
Apps for 'Internet of Customers'
Developers looking to harness the cloud are also being targeted through events such as Google Cloud Platform Live. Google held its first such gathering earlier this year, and plans a second one for Nov. 4 in San Francisco. Set to be broadcast live, the event will provide developers with an overview of hot topics in cloud computing. Google engineers will also lead presentations on how developers can build scalable apps that are powered by Google Cloud Platform.
Google's cloud-based services for developers include database administration, demand-scalable managed services, big-data analytics and more. In addition to hardware infrastructure, it also provides software such as Spanner and Flume.
Of course, Google isn't the only tech company seeking to drive faster innovation in the development community. Just last week, Salesforce.com's global investment arm, Salesforce Ventures, announced it was creating a new $100-million fund for growing companies to develop mobile apps and connected products for its Salesforce1 platform. The first dedicated fund for Salesforce Ventures, the new program is aimed at fueling "mobile innovation for the Internet of Customers," Salesforce.com said.