Not long ago, Google announced the opening up of their application engine API to the world, well, ten thousand inhabitants for starters, then, we are assured, it will be open to all.
Many programmers and webs are anxiously awaiting the opportunity to access Googles cloud computing infrastructure and create the next generation of Google Apps, which is based on python, but Google has left a vague inference that the API may be opened to other languages in the future. But whats in it for Google? Why the sudden move to open up what has been, until now, a service privileged to only a few?
What the web devs are fearing is a Google led monopoly on web services. The Google system is massively scalable, and so can generate and power the largest of sites and still have room for plenty more. When Google acquired YouTube it was no small task to convert it to the Google cloud, and keep the service on-line, as this was the only reason it had outlasted its oppositions.
Should newcomers to the Google cloud start producing new applications, or cloning existing applications, there is a great benefit to them in the shape of a solid and proven architecture that can scale almost infinitely. Is this the worm with a hook in it?
The history of Google is one of acquisition after acquisition of companies who Google has seen potential in. This has been beneficial to both the company concerned and to Google shareholders, it seems everybody wins. However, if developers now begin coding for the Google platform, they can easily swoop and buy up these applications, without the pain of switching platforms as was experienced with the YouTube acquisition.
Each application developed on the Google platform, whether owned by Google or a third party, means more internet sites and pages featuring ads brokered by Google. Application developers themselves would become more prolific thus reducing the cost development and Google would be able to pick from top of the world coding talent.
Which ever way it plays out, Google wins. If developers choose to stick with Google, they will need to pay for their success or, be snapped up by Google and added to their collective.