SimpleGeo's hosted spatial database service Storage was released from private beta. This is the flagship product from the company we named as most promising company of 2011. Storage is a hosted version of Apache Cassandra that has been modified to suit the needs of geolocation developers. The goal is to make it as easy as possible for developers to add geolocation features to Web and mobile applications.Today
The service is free for the first 30 days, and will then cost 25 cents per thousand data calls, and 10 cents per thousand records stored.
SimpleGeo started as a gaming company back in 2009, but the team quickly realized that the tools they needed didn't really exist. So the company built them. Storage joins SimpleGeo's existing serivces Context and Places. Context provides information such as geographic boundaries, weather, and demographics for a specific location. Places provides business listings and points of interest.
The company has also worked hard to build a fast and highly scalable infrastructure. During SimpleGeo's beta testing, 99% of spatial queries are processed in less than 100ms. Last month we posted a talk by Mike Malone, an infrastructure engineer at SimpleGeo, on why and how SimpleGeo built its own Cassandra-based database to handle geolocation data:
In particular, the company wants to avoid the problems Foursquare has had with availability. Last year, Foursquare had a 11 hour period of downtime. An explanation on the company blog pointed to MongoDB sharding issues. SimpleGeo hopes to avoid these problems by using Cassandra, which is a highly distributed database.
Matt Galligan, co-founder and chief strategy office of SimpleGeo, says Storage further differentiates itself from Geo-MongoDB in that it has done away with the use of Z-Trees. He says that Z-Trees are inaccurate and that SimpleGeo employs KD-Trees that allows it to have accurate results ands still scale.