Google will join competitors in launching an SA Cloud region but remain coy on when

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Google is opening a Cloud hub in South Africa, the first for the continent.
Google is opening a Cloud hub in South Africa, the first for the continent.
Rafael Henrique/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty
  • Google will be launching the first Google Cloud region on the African continent in South Africa.
  • It remains coy on when the region will be launched.
  • It commissioned research which says that the cloud region will create 40 000 jobs by 2030 and contribute $2.1 billion to South Africa's GDP.
  • For more stories, visit the Tech and Trends homepage.

Google is being coy on its timelines for launching a Google Cloud region in South Africa. Its competitors, such as Amazon and Microsoft launched Cloud regions in South Africa some time ago.

In a written response to News24, Niral Patel, director of Google Cloud Africa, said that Google is "firming up" its timelines for the region launch in South Africa and will be able to share more information when it becomes available.

The company announced in October last year that it would be launching a Google Cloud region in South Africa - a first for the African continent. 

Cloud computing enables on-demand computing resources that allow users to store, manage and process data using servers hosted on the internet. Users of cloud services do not need their own local data centres.

Google Cloud already operates in South Africa, serving customers such as e-commerce giant Takealot. 

Patal said that Google’s cloud services will be brought closer to local customers when the South African Cloud region is launched.

This will enable them to "innovate and securely deliver faster, more reliable experiences to their own customers, helping to accelerate their growth", he said.

Patal said that the adoption of Google's cloud services by businesses and the public sector will enable "cost savings, risk mitigation, and support greater scalability". 

Together with the Cloud region, Google is building dedicated Cloud interconnect sites in Johannesburg and Cape Town and has expanded its network through the Equiano subsea cable which landed in Melkbosstrand north of Cape Town in August last year.

READ MORE | Cloud computing: invisible, versatile and highly profitable

Google commissioned research by AlphaBeta Economics to develop preliminary estimates of the economic impact from increased adoption of Google’s cloud services in economies including South Africa.

It said:

The research found that the Cloud region will contribute a cumulative $2.1 billion (R41.4 billion) to the country's GDP and will support the creation of more than 40 000 jobs by 2030.

Google is slower than some of it’s competitors in establishing a Cloud region in South Africa.

Amazon Web Services went live with it’s regional cloud centre in South Africa in 2020.

Microsoft bested Amazon, by launching Azure regions in South Africa in March 2019.

Patal said that Google's cloud services will be the cleanest in the industry as customers' usage of Google Cloud services will be net carbon neutral.

"The electricity used to power workloads is matched 100% with renewable energy," said Patal.  

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