Google’s new database service, Cloud Spanner, officially launched into public beta on Tuesday, offering a blend traditional and NoSQL database functionality.

According to a Google blog post announcing the service, database administrators typically must make a decision between the transactional consistency of traditional databases or the scaling and distribution offered by NoSQL. However, “Cloud Spanner breaks that dichotomy, offering both of these critical capabilities in a single, fully managed service,” the post said.

According to the post, Cloud Spanner is a globally distributed relational database service offering both horizontal scaling and high availability. It combines both SQL semantics and ACID transactions.

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“With its ease of provisioning and scalability, it will accelerate our ability to bring cloud-based omni-channel supply chain solutions to our users around the world,” John Sarvari, group vice president of technology at JDA, said in a press release.

Cloud Spanner is the latest database service to join Google Cloud Platform, joining the likes of Cloud SQL, Cloud Datastore, and Cloud Bigtable. In terms of benefits, the service allows admins to focus on their application logic instead of dealing with hardware and software management, the release said.

Additionally, RDBMS solutions can be scaled out “without complex sharding or clustering,” and horizontal scaling can be achieved without migration from relational to NoSQL databases. Their service also provides high availability disaster protection, the post said. And, data-layer encryption, identity and access management, and audit logging all provide additional security.

Cloud Spanner operates on a pay for what you use model, with pricing determined by compute node-hours, actual storage consumption, and external network access. Additionally, the post said, it “supports distributed transactions, schemas and DDL statements, SQL queries and JDBC drivers and offers client libraries for the most popular languages, including Java, Go, Python and Node.js.”

Spanner was developed at Google and has been tested and used in-house there for years. There have been talks before about commercializing the service, but questions remained of whether or not Google could attract developers to it. However, with its ability to traverse two popular database types without complex migration, Cloud Spanner could help Google win some more enterprises over to its side in the cloud wars.

The 3 big takeaways for TechRepublic readers

  1. Google has launched its Cloud Spanner database product into public beta, offering a service that provides traditional and NoSQL database features.
  2. Cloud Spanner frees admins up to focus on the application itself, without having to worry so much about hardware and software management.
  3. Cloud Spanner was used in-house at Google for a long time and, if marketed correctly, could win Google some more enterprise fans.