Google Launches Cloud In South Africa
South Africa will become the latest country to join Google Cloud as the tech giant’s first cloud region on the continent.
On October 5th, 2022, Google announced plans to follow in the footsteps of competitors by launching its premier African cloud region.
Cloud regions in Africa
This comes years after major cloud providers Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services established their South African cloud regions in 2019 and 2020, respectively.
In addition, earlier this year, Oracle, another competing cloud service, set up its data center in Johannesburg, making Google the fourth cloud storage provider to invest in Africa.
At the Google for Africa hybrid event in Lagos, Nigeria, Google Cloud Africa director Niral Patel said: “We are excited to announce the first Google Cloud region in Africa. The new region will allow for the localization of applications and services.”
“It will make it easier for our customers and partners to quickly deploy solutions for their businesses, whereby they’re able to leverage our computer artificial intelligence or machine learning capabilities, and data analytics to make smarter business decisions as they go forward.”
Giving customers choice
Patel did not communicate when the Cloud region would launch. Still, he did contextualize the announcement by adding: “What we’re doing here is giving customers and partners a choice on where they’d like to store their data and where they’d like to consume cloud services, especially in the context of data sovereignty.”
“This allows customers to then store the data in the country should they choose to do so… I guess for me the most important element is that it gives customers the element of choice.”
It is increasingly important that users have options regarding data storage as countries like Kenya tighten their privacy and data laws.
The expansion of choice and resources available to Google’s African customers is intended to boost innovation by enabling users to provide more secure and reliable experiences at greater speeds.
Research conducted by AlphaBeta Economics (commissioned by Google Cloud) also found that the South Africa cloud region will contribute over $2.1 billion to South Africa’s GDP and support the creation of more than 40,000 jobs by 2030.