Cloudability, the Portland based startup, today opened up to public after staying in private beta since June. They launched in GigaOm’s Structure Conference this year and their SaaS offering is targeted towards cloud users who are worried about surprises in their next bill. Right now, their service is free and I am expecting them to move towards a Fremium model later. With customers like Slideshare, StockTwits, Kissmetrics, etc., they are hoping to get their share in the wide open cloud management space.
Even during the virtualization era, VM Sprawl was a big problem but as we move more and more into a cloud based model with the pay per use pricing, it is important to have full control over the virtual resources. Any lack of discipline directly leads to financial loss. With seamless programatic autoscaling feature of the cloud, it is quite easy to lose control over the resource usage and end up having surprises when it is time to open the wallet for payment. With the Economic Denial Of Service, a possibility highlighted by Chris Hoff sometime back, the importance of having a close watch on the costs involved is critical. As more and more enterprises are considering use of public clouds, the biggest headache for enterprise managers is on keeping tab on the costs.
Cloudability is a SaaS solution offering users a straightforward way to keep tab on the costs involved. It is as easy as signing up, adding cloud service accounts and watching the emails daily. It aggregates the usage from many different cloud providers and offers a single pane of glass over the costs involved. The service is free for now. I think they are planning to monetize large enterprise customers at a later stage. The biggest attraction for me is its simplicity and the peace of mind which a cloud user gets when they sign up for a service like this. In fact, Slideshare seems to have saved $5000 after they signed up for the service. The average savings for their customers seems to be $2K and as enterprises start using public clouds, the wastage will be orders of magnitude more and a service like this can have a big impact on the IT bottom-line.
It is a great service and solving a very important pain point. But it is in a competitive space and it is going to be interesting to see how they navigate the market segment. Though the future of cloud cost management is bright, they are facing competition from two sides. One is from existing companies in the space like Apptio and others. More importantly, they face competition from the cloud platform providers and other cloud management players. As an analyst and advisor, I interact with many players in the cloud infrastructure space and I see many players recognizing the importance of cost management and offer it as a part of their platform. More recently, I got briefed by a cloud service provider and their home grown platform has cost visibility built into every screen of their control panel. If Cloudability expects to stay in for the long haul, I would expect them to diversify fast from just cost management to adjoining areas like SLA management, etc..
In short, it is an interesting company with lots of potential in a highly competitive space. Check them out and you will definitely thank them for the money you saved with their service. Especially, if you are a single developer or a startup without ops and if you are using one or more cloud infrastructure services, there is no excuse to not use Cloudability.
- Track Cloud Spending With Cloudability (pcworld.com)
- An API For Paid API Usage? It’s Called Cloudability (programmableweb.com)
- Cloudability offers cloud cost-tracking APIs, free beer (gigaom.com)
- Cloudability launches open beta to help you manage and track cloud spending (venturebeat.com)
- Cloudability tracks cloud spending (infoworld.com)
- Portland-Based Cloudability Named As One of the Most Promising Cloud Companies of 2011 (prweb.com)
- Meet Cloudability, ‘Mint.com for the cloud’ (gigaom.com)