Web

Apple signs deal to power part of iCloud with Google Cloud Platform

Apple computers, headquarters
Last month the Google Cloud Platform gained a major customer when Spotify decided to ditch its own data centers and rely on Google’s platform instead. That seemed to be a big deal for Google at the time, but the latest client it has landed for its cloud platform makes that deal look like small potatoes.

Google’s latest customer is not only a bigger name than Spotify, but also a direct competitor in more than one market. But that hasn’t stopped Apple from signing a deal to power part of iCloud using the Google Cloud Platform, according to a report from CRN, which has sources saying that Apple is spending anywhere from $400 million to $600 million on the deal.

Until now, iCloud has been powered by a combination of Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, and its own servers. Apple hasn’t entirely abandoned AWS, and remains a customer, though it has significantly reduced its reliance on the platform.

Google has a long history of not sharing numbers any more than it has to, and this includes its cloud revenue, but this is without a doubt a major deal for the company in terms of market share, if not in revenue. While AWS remains the go-to solution for many companies, Google’s vow to undercut it in terms of price has seen Google Cloud Platform gaining significant business volume.

As for why Apple is opting to move to Google’s platform instead of simply staying put with AWS, cost likely has a lot to do with it. “Google is actually the cheapest play in the market when you take into consideration everything they’re doing and when you take into account their various incentives,” says Micheal Fraser, CEO of InfiniteOps, a cloud vendor that works with Google, adding that the company offers the “most cost savings, [and] lowest pricing for what you actually get.”

While it’s definitely interesting to see Apple in such a close business relationship with one of its chief competitors, this deal may not actually last all that long. In a report released last month, Morgan Stanley speculated that Apple may be looking into building its own data centers. As computing in general becomes more cloud focused, a move by Apple away from reliance on other companies for its cloud services would certainly make sense.

Emerging Tech

A giant new solar farm in Texas will harness the sun’s rays to … brew beer?

Brewing beer is surprisingly energy intensive. With a giant new solar farm in Texas, the world’s largest beer manufacturer promises to brew 100% of its beverages using renewable energy.
Music

Apple Music vs. Spotify: Which service is the streaming king?

Apple Music is giving Spotify a run for its money, but which service is best for you? In our Apple Music vs. Spotify showdown, we compare and contrast all we know about the two streaming music services.
Computing

The true advantage of AMD’s next-gen chips isn’t power, it’s platforms

AMD announced some impressive new processors and GPUs at E3 this week, with plenty of muscle to flex. But the real strength of AMD in the future isn't its power or even its price. It's cross-platform scalability.
Gaming

Microsoft's Xbox Project Scarlett console is awesome, and it doesn't matter

Microsoft has set a release date for Project Scarlett, its next-generation game console. It promises incredible performance, stunning 8K visuals, and lightning-quick load times -- but none of that matters. The console's relevance is waning.
Photography

Looking for free public domain images? Here are the best websites to find them

Wouldn't it be wonderful to freely download and use an image from the web without the looming fear of prosecution? Of course! That's why we've put together a list of the best places to download free public domain images.
Movies & TV

Save a few bucks with the best free feature-length movies on YouTube

Bank account emptier than you thought? Check out our curated list of the best full-length movies on YouTube to find flicks that are free, legally uploaded, and actually worth watching.
Mobile

Sign In with Apple sticks it to Google and Facebook, for the good of everyone

Apple wants you to use its new Sign In with Apple service, which promises to free you from password hell, without selling your soul to the advertising devil. Is it worth using when it launches this year?
Web

NSA warns about Windows exploit, ignores its own role in creation of malware

In a rare occurrence, the National Security Agency has published a statement urging people to update their Windows systems to protect against the BlueKeep vulnerability, a recently-detailed wormable exploit affecting Windows 7 and earlier.
Web

Maker Media, the company behind MAKE magazine and Maker Faire events, shuts down

Sad news for DIY enthusiasts: Maker Media, the company which runs the Maker Faire events and which produces the magazine MAKE, is shutting down. The company has laid off all its staff and is ceasing operations.
Computing

Paid browsers are the future, and Firefox might offer a better deal than Chrome

Just like Google, Mozilla is planning on offering premium web-browsing services. Unlike Google, however, it seems like Mozilla might have a better strategy for encouraging users to subscribe to its future premium plans.
Computing

Opera GX is a browser for gamers, but the actual gaming is still to come

Every company seems to have a product line or two aimed squarely at gamers, so why not browsers too? Opera has a new branch of its main browser called Opera GX and it's designed specifically with gamers in mind.
Mobile

Amazon Prime Day 2019 will likely be on July 15, according to leaked email

It looks like we now have an idea of when Amazon Prime Day 2019 will be, thanks to a leaked email that was sent out to promote a vacuum cleaner deal for Prime Day. According to the email, the massive shopping event will take place on July…
Social Media

Here's how to unblock someone on Facebook when you've had a change of heart

Maybe you were a little too hasty blocking that one person on Facebook ... or maybe you just want to do a little spying to see what they're up to. Either way, you can fix the situation easily. Here's how to unblock someone on Facebook.
Music

The best free music download sites that are totally legal

Finding music that is both free and legal to download can be difficult. We've hand-picked a selection of the best free music download sites for you to legally download your next favorite album.