Look out Amazon Web Services, Google Compute Engine is open for business

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Source: Joe Shlabotnik, via Flickr

Google finally opened up Compute Engine, its infrastructure service, to any and all takers. Starting later today, anyone can go online and order up compute infrastructure.

Compute Engine has been available as an invite-only service, until about a month ago when it opened up for users who paid for a certain level of support. Now, it’s wide open.

As GigaOm’s Barb Darrow notes, Google Compute Engine is an infrastructure service to watch. Given Google’s chops building systems to support its own massive compute needs, it’s in a prime position to be a real contender to Amazon Web Services.

Google also announced on Wednesday that it’s adding PHP support, the most requested feature among Compute Engine users or wannabe users.

Still, AWS has a huge head start. It’s by far the largest service provider out there. And it’s got the most features.

But the problem facing all of the cloud providers is appealing to the enterprise. They have to win enterprise customers if the public cloud is going to continue to grow.

AWS has received its fair share of criticism for the way it handles enterprises, but it most definitely recognizes the importance of the enterprise market and has been aggressively adding services and workers to address this market.

In other enterprise-facing businesses, like Google Apps, Google too faces a lot of criticism for its ability to handle enterprise accounts, compared to competitors like Microsoft. If its Compute Engine follows the same trajectory, it will have to do better.

I’ve asked Amazon if it’s worried about Google’s official entry in the market and will update if the company has got something to say.

Read more of Nancy Gohring's "To the Cloud" blog and follow the latest IT news at ITworld. Follow Nancy on Twitter at @ngohring. For the latest IT news, analysis and how-tos, follow ITworld on Twitter and Facebook.

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