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September 24, 2019updated 25 Sep 2019 10:27am

Cloudera Gives Birth to its Post-Merger Baby

"We are iterating incredibly rapidly. We plan on having a monthly release schedule and a bi-weekly bug fix schedule"

By CBR Staff Writer

It may have been a long and difficult labour, but Cloudera has finally revealed the baby born of its merger with rival Hortonworks – the Cloudera Data Platform (CDP).

The new cloud-based offering aims to be the last word in data analytics management for businesses who want to be able to crunch and analyse inputs from across (and on) a heterogeneous IT environment: it runs across any public/private/on-premises mix.

The cloud-agnostic platform represents a fundamental overhaul of the Apache Hadoop/Spark stack with a range of UX improvements (Cloudera says it can be deployed in under an hour, even on-prem) and lets users – who pay per instance – manage data workloads across any combination of public/private/hybrid cloud.

Palo Alto-based Cloudera named Accenture, GlaxoSmithKline, and Globe Telecom as early adopters of the heavily virtualised offering, which supports flow and streaming, data engineering, data warehouse, operational database, and machine learning; in short, the vast majority of data-centric workloads a company might want.

See also:Cloudera Bucks an Industry Trend, Doubles Down on Open Source

The CDP is priced per instance, starting at $0.24/hr for its data hub, $0.68/hr for its machine learning component, and $0.72/hr for its data warehouse.

The company describes these, respectively as:

  1. Cloudera Data Hub – A cloud-native data management for IT and developers to build custom business applications
  2. Cloudera Machine Learning – A way to deploy collaborative ML workspaces for teams of data scientists with self-service access to enterprise data.
  3. Cloudera Data Warehouse – A way to deploy data warehouses for teams of business analysts “with secure, self-service access to enterprise data.”

(The product overall is, in part, another triumph of Kubernetes, which abstracts away the infrastructure layer and lets the Cloudera Data Platform spin up rapidly).

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We spoke with Chief Marketing Officer Mick Hollison.

Cloudera CMO Mick HollisonAre you confident you’ve priced this correctly?

It’s a very challenging thing to do to price a product on a consumption basis for, historically, a subscription-based software company.

I think you need to look beyond the opening page: like any such company we’re priced per instance hour and the instance types are different.

More importantly, what you have to remember is that what we’ve included right out of the box with, for example, our data hub offering, far exceeds any of the house offerings from public cloud vendors. For example, you’d really need to take AWS’s EMR plus Glue in order to get to something that was akin to data hub.

More importantly, the number of projects supported, the kind of security that travels with you across clouds are stuff that’s just not available from other vendors on the market. I think we have incredibly competitive pricing and it will be economically advantageous for customers to take a good look at Cloudera.

How Important has the Merger Been to Getting Cloudera Data Platform to Market?

Candidly, I doubt the company could have gotten to where we are today had we remained an independent company.

So while there’s certainly been a fair amount of scuttlebutt in the media about what the benefits of the merger are, from our perspective we know we couldn’t have pulled off what we just pulled off without bringing the two companies together.

It’s been a challenging journey but we’ve taken on board a lot of input from our big customers who’ve spoken at length this week about their positive experiences with this technology and think we have a great product.

Nothing is perfect right out of the gate, but the good news is that unlike the big monolithic on-premises companies, we’re iterating at an incredibly rapid rate: we plan on having a monthly release schedule and a bi-weekly bug fix schedule.

You’re Clearly Proud of the Finished Article: What Stands Out Most for You?

Around 10 years ago I remember going through the “bring your own device” environment. People would show up with their own Mac, tablet, iPhone and the like into the corporate environment instead of the industrial grade Dell laptop that was locked down and you couldn’t do much with it.

But IT eventually figured out how to embrace that kind of environment and now most of us don’t think twice about bringing whatever device we choose into the workplace. The same thing is happening in the data management realm: business wants to go really fast; they want to get insights really quickly.

That has often led them to go with one particular provider, often to the chagrin of the IT organisation, which has a mandate to ensure security and mitigate risk. It’s put IT in this position where they often have to tell line of business “no, you can’t do that” and we believe that we have just built the first platform that will let them say “yes”.

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