Google I/O conference, the App Engine team will be making a number of announcements. In advance of the conference, we interviewed Paul McDonald and Pete Koomen, two App Engine product managers, on our podcast show ReadWriteTalk. Specifically, Google will be announcing:At tomorrow's
- Pricing options for additional App Engine resources
- Two new App Engine APIs
- Opening up the waiting list
Pricing Options for Additional Resources
According to Pete and Paul, one of the largest feature requests for Google App Engine was the ability to purchase additional computing resources. If you aren't aware, currently App Engine (a developer tool that enables you to run your web applications on Google's infrastructure) provides free access to persistent storage of up to 500 MB and enough bandwidth for about 5 million page views a month.
Currently there is no ability for developers to purchase additional resources. But towards the end of the year, developers will be able to purchase more resources at the following pricing:
* $0.10 - $0.12 per CPU core-hour
* $0.15 - $0.18 per GB-month of storage
* $0.11 - $0.13 per GB outgoing bandwidth
* $0.09 - $0.11 per GB incoming bandwidth
This pricing does seem competitive with similar offerings from Amazon Web Services.
Two New APIs
The Google App Engine team is also releasing two new APIs. The first will allow web developers to easily do image manipulation - i.e. to scale, rotate, and crop images on the server. The second API allows App Engine applications to take advantage of memcached - a high-performance caching layer designed to make page rendering faster for developers.
Removing Waiting Lists
Another announcement tomorrow will be the elimination of all waiting lists for access to the App Engine. Paul and Pete indicated that currently about 75,000 users have received access. However more than 150,000 developers have joined the product's waiting list over the past 6 weeks alone! But on Wednesday, Google App Engine will be available to everyone.
However, note that until the turn of the year when you can purchase additional computing resources, apps will probably be limited to small test apps.
Still No Support for Languages Outside Python
While all of this is great progress, we're sure that many will be disappointed that App Engine is still limited to Python Apps. Shortly after launching Google App Engine, we created an interactive game that asked you to both predict what Google (and others) would do next and voice your opinion about what should happen. Not surprisingly, 55% of you anticipated Google would begin supporting other languages beyond Python.
It appears this is not going to be the case. While Pete and Paul indicated that this is on the roadmap, they wouldn't provide timelines or indications on which languages would be next. They did provide some insight however into the process necessary to support additional languages - listen to the podcast for those details.
As we commented yesterday, it's nice to see Google wooing web developers. If App Engine is ultimately successful, they'll need those engineers to choose it over Amazon's offerings or future competition from Microsoft and startups. It will be interesting to read the reaction to the announcements at I/O tomorrow. Let us know what you think in the comments below.