November 8th, 2011
Make your Cloud spending less hazy: Portland’s Cloudability opens public beta
Portland’s Cloudability took the wraps off of its public beta last week, allowing any and all users to beta test their Cloud-spending management service.
Wait, what? Cloud-spending management? I thought the Cloud was super easy and super cheap? Well, it is super easy. But it’s so easy, that it’s causing some companies to waste thousands of dollars—in a single weekend. Cloudability hopes to prevent that.
Here’s what the media had to say about the launch:
Cloudability helps businesses be more efficient on the cloud by analyzing a company’s entire cloud spend for cost savings opportunities and make recommendations. Cloudability supports more than 80 cloud and application providers, including AWS, Rackspace, Heroku, Airbrake and Google Apps, to give companies the ability to monitor and analyze complete cloud spend across multiple vendors.
Most cloud providers don’t have APIs to access spending data, so Cloudability has to employ scraping. That’s not the end goal, though. The founders are working on standards for representing and sharing billing and usage data. The first version of this is visible in the new Cloudability API.
My own start-up is checking out the service, because we have accounts with at least eight of the services that Cloudability tracks: Sendgrid, Mailchimp, Basecamp, Dropbox, Google Apps, Heroku, Github, and GoDaddy. As small as we are, we’d have a hard time totaling up our cloud services spend because some of these services are rolled into our contractors’ invoices. And we’re not alone in our ignorance of our real IT spending.
Imagine plopping down your credit card to turn on compute services late at night when there’s no time to get permission from your boss and then getting distracted before the weekend on another work emergency. On Monday, when you remember you signed up for the services, which you intended to use for just a short time, you discover you’ve racked up $5,000 in charges on your personal card.
Starting Wednesday, Cloudability, a member of the AWS developers program, will let beta customers use JSON or XML API, through which they can access their cloud billing and usage data from major providers. From there, that data can be funneled into Excel spreadsheets or whatever other software the company would like to use.
With many companies feeling the push to use cloud services instead of local ones, many don’t initially see how hard it can be to track daily spending for pay-per-use or highly scalable services. For example, if your company pays Amazon Web Services to deploy extra virtual servers but doesn’t actually use them until a few weeks later, Cloudability can show you how much you’re spending per day to run those servers needlessly.
Cloud spend management is a target opportunity for a growing number of companies as end users fire up multiple accounts with multiple clouds and need to reconcile spending.
And, of course, the press release: Cloudability Opens Beta and Launches API to Help Companies Increase Cloud Spend Efficiency
For more information or to sign up, visit Cloudability or follow @cloudability on Twitter.
[Full disclosure: Cloudability is a startup in PIE. I work for PIE]