Google has announced a new region for its Google Cloud Platform, in Northern Virginia - an obvious location given the hyper-growth of data centers in that area.

The search giant does not list a data center location in Northern Virginia on its data center locations page, but the Northern Virginia region is already marked as a “current region” on the Cloud Platform  To launch a region it will have to have multiple data centers in the region to provide reliable services. 

Google Cloud logo
Google Cloud logo – Sebastian Moss

Coming to Virginia

”The launch of Northern Virginia (us-east4) brings the total number of regions serving the Americas market to four including Oregon, Iowa, and South Carolina,” says a blog post by Dave Stiver, product manager for Google Cloud Platform. ”We’ll continue to turn up new options for developers in this market with future regions in São Paulo, Montreal, and California.”

Google is building regions rapidly in an attempt to catch up with Amazon Web Services (AWS). It currently has seven regions in total with another ten planned - while AWS already has sixteen with another three on the way.

New regions give customers the option of running workloads closer to their staff and customers, Stiver points out. ”Developers who want to serve the Northeastern and Mid-Atlantic regions of the United States will see significant reductions in latency when they run their workloads in the Northern Virginia region.”

Google’s tests predict performance improvements, which will cut the latency to customers in Washington DC, New York, Boston, Montreal, and Toronto by 25 percent  to 85 percent, compared with using the Iowa or South Carolina regions.

Viant, an online advertising company owned by Time Inc, is a Google Cloud user, and CIO Linh Chung is predicting better response times: ”We are a latency-sensitive business and the addition of the Northern Virginia region will allow us to expand our coverage area and reduce latency to our current users,” says a quote in the Google blog. ”This will also allow us to significantly increase the capability of our Data Lake platform, which we are looking at as a competitive advantage.”