May 10th, 2011 | Published in Google App Engine
Google App Engine has grown tremendously since it launched in Preview status in 2008. More than 100,000 developers use App Engine every month to deliver apps that dynamically scale with usage without the need to manage hardware or software. App Engine now hosts more than 200,000 active apps that serve over 1.5 billion site views daily. Over the last three years we’ve collected great feedback from our customers and have continued to improve our services. We are now confident that App Engine is almost ready to graduate from Preview status, and we are pleased to announce that graduation will be taking place later this year. Graduation indicates a long term commitment by Google to App Engine which in turn means a long term commitment by App Engine to our customers!
Google App Engine for BusinessAs you might recall, Google App Engine for Business (GAE4B) was announced at Google I/O last year. Since then we’ve been testing various aspects of the offering and getting a lot of feedback. At a high level what we’ve been hearing can be summarized as:
- Our customers are really excited about many of the features of GAE4B: SLA, SSL for custom domains, SQL, etc
- The per-user, per-app pricing is not appropriate for many customers that are excited about the GAE4B features because they are not always building applications focused on users within their organization.
- Because App Engine is currently a Preview product, some businesses are reluctant to heavily invest in the platform.
App Engine graduating from Preview later this year!Based on this feedback we’ve decided to make some fairly large changes:
- We will be leaving Preview to become an official Google product! This is the top priority for our team and we are on schedule to graduate in the second half of this year. This does not mean we’ve stopped development of other much needed features, for example today we are releasing Backends.
- Most of the GAE4B features are going to be rolled into App Engine, enabling all paying customers to take advantage of them. This includes: SLA, SSL for custom domains, SQL, Operational and Developer support, and the new business-oriented Terms of Service. The domain console is currently in trusted tester and will remain so for the time being. GAE4B will no longer be offered as a standalone product.
- In order to become an official Google product we must restructure our pricing model to obtain sustainable revenue. Based on customer feedback this means focusing on usage-based pricing and placing per-user, per-app pricing on hold until further notice.
New App Engine Pricing ModelAlthough the change won’t take place until later this year, we are announcing this today because it will impact all of our customers and we want to ensure they have enough lead time to understand and account for these changes. We encourage our customers to review the details of the new pricing model, but the major changes are: Usage Types
- Free Apps: Similar to the Free Apps of today but with more restrictive quotas
- Paid Apps: Similar to Apps which have Billing Enabled today, except they will have a 99.95% SLA and cost $9/app/month in addition to usage fees. Customers will need to opt-in to this.
- Premier Accounts: A new offering which will allow a company to not pay for individual Apps but rather use as many as they need. Premier Accounts will be eligible to receive Operational Support for $500/month in addition to usage fees.
- Instances: Due to customer feedback and to better service memory intensive applications, we will be eliminating CPU hours. Instead, our serving infrastructure will charge for the number of Instances running as a new unit called “Instance-hours (IH)” (1 instance running for 1 hour). These instances will be similar to the instances you can see in the Admin Console today with the exception that we will be improving our scheduler to ensure each instance has an appropriate level of utilization. IHs can either be pay-as-you-go ($0.08/IH) or you can commit to a minimum number of IHs over the course of a week and pay less for those reserved IHs ($0.05/IH).
- APIs: All APIs which are currently charged as CPU hours will instead be charged per operation. This is intended to make it easier to predict and understand the cost of an application. Our website contains the details of the API pricing.
- Datastore Storage: High Replication Datastore (HRD) storage is being reduced in price from $0.45/G/month to $0.24/G/month as of today. HRD has delivered essentially 99.999% uptime since we launched it in January. As of today HRD is the default option for new applications, and we strongly encourage users of the M/S Datastore to migrate to HRD. Master/Slave Datastore storage will increase to $0.24/G/month when App Engine leaves Preview. We are actively working on better tools to make this migration easier.
Thank you!We are excited to graduate from Preview and we want to let everyone know how much we appreciate the support, commitment, and feedback we have received. We look forward to working with you for years to come!
The App Engine Team