New Zealand open-source champion Catalyst has taken on the multinationals launching a locally-hosted automated cloud service.
The Catalyst Cloud service uses OpenStack, a free, open-source set of tools. It was built using low-cost commodity hardware.
Catalyst Cloud was officially opened this morning by Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce. See Catalyst Cloud Formally Launched for the company’s own description.
A media statement says the service is: “The product of two years of research and development and millions of dollars of investment”.
It has the capacity for 100,000 virtual servers.
New Zealanders aren’t short of cloud computing options. All the big multinational cloud providers serve customers here.
Because they operate around the world they get global economies of scale. And yet a glance at the price list shows costs are in line with brands such as Amazon Web Services.
Catalyst says this means the company could keep as much as NZ$40 million a year of cloud business in New Zealand.
Local customers get the advantage of paying for cloud services in New Zealand dollars, which, given currency volatility, makes it easier to plan spending.
There are also latency benefits. While ping times to Sydney-based servers are in line with times between cities at the extreme north and south ends of New Zealand, users need to pay extra for dedicated international bandwidth to get the best results.
Add all in the arguments about data sovereignty and Catalyst has a compelling sales story.
At the time of writing, there is a web dashboard for real-time provisioning of virtual machines, network and storage. You can buy compute services, a machine image service, block and object storage, software defined networking (SDN), automated monitoring and security. Catalyst says it has VPN-as-a-service in beta.