With AlloyDB, Google goes upmarket on PostgreSQL

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In the dynamic market of services around PostgreSQL, Google intends to compete with AWS and Microsoft with the AlloyDB offer. Presented as a preview, this DBaaS offer will benefit from several AI and analytical functionalities.

In the flurry of announcements at the developer conference, Google I/O, one particularly caught the eye in the area of ​​cloud databases. Indeed, the firm presented a preview of a managed DBaaS (database as a service) offer compatible with PostgreSQL. Called AlloyDB, it aims to compete with solutions such as Aurora from AWS or PostgreSQL in Azure from Microsoft.

A high-end version for PostgreSQL

The Mountain View company already has a PostgreSQL-oriented DBaaS named CloudSQL which, according to it, has “good attractiveness”. In a blog, Andi Gutmans, in charge of databases at Google Cloud, targets AlloyDB for “high-end databases”. And to add: “we found that there were gaps that we had to fill in this type of database. It’s about scalability, availability and going beyond transactional to support analytical workflows.” AlloyDB uses Google Cloud infrastructure (storage, compute and network) by combining it with PostgreSQL compatibility. Andi Gutmans says performance and scalability will be faster than what CloudSQL offers.

To explain this acceleration, “the key ingredient is the new storage layer that boosts the performance of Postgre SQL,” said Noel Yuhanna, chief analyst at Forrester. This engine is backed by built-in AI and machine learning, has analytics acceleration capabilities, and enables automatic data prioritization. Note that AlloyDB maintains full compatibility with PostgreSQL 14, the latest version of the open source project. This means customers can migrate existing PostgreSQL applications without changing the code.

Accompany the popularity of the open source database

This announcement is clearly part of a desire to help companies migrate their databases to the cloud with an open source approach. According to Gartner, more than 50% of legacy databases are in this transition process. Furthermore, 75% of all databases will be deployed or migrated to the cloud and only 5% will be repatriated to on-premises systems. A trend driven by the desire of companies to use these bases for analytics, according to the consulting firm. Companies mostly turn to PostgreSQL as their DBMS.

This gives us a better understanding of the significant competition in the market for managed services around PostgreSQL. AWS, Microsoft, and Google Cloud have launched offerings to meet this growing popularity. “Postgres is definitely in the midst of a resurgence in interest and usage. This is largely because it’s an open source database with many potential vendors, and because it’s a versatile database that has been increasingly adapted to all sorts of workloads,” explained Stephen O’Grady, principal analyst at RedMonk. Compared to MySQL, it includes several advantages points out Noel Yuhanna, “companies prefer the transactional and analytical capacities of PostgreSQL, the extended support of spatial data, the broader SQL support, the reinforced security and governance, and the extended support of programming languages, leading to greater growth”.

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