By Supantha Mukherjee
STOCKHOLM (Reuters) – Alphabet’s Google Cloud said on Thursday its customers who want to migrate their data to another cloud provider will not have to pay any network fees to make the transfer.
Many cloud providers, including Microsoft’s Azure and Amazon Web Services (AWS), charge customers based on the amount of data transferred when they switch vendors.
Britain’s media regulator Ofcom in October raised concerns about the fees, saying it can discourage customers from switching to an alternative provider. Ofcom had earlier asked the country’s antitrust authority to investigate tech giants’ dominance of the UK cloud market.
Although eliminating data transfer fees will make it easier for customers to change their cloud provider, restrictive and unfair licensing practices are why many customers do not switch, Amit Zavery, head of platform at Google Cloud wrote in a blog post.
“Making it easier for customers to move from one provider to another does little to improve choice if customers remain locked in with restrictive licences,” he said.
AWS leads the cloud computing market, followed by Azure, and Google is a distant third. Both Google and Amazon had earlier said that Microsoft’s terms of services had made it difficult for customers to switch.
Removal of data transfer fees applies to all customers globally from Thursday.
(Reporting by Supantha Mukherjee in Stockholm; editing by Barbara Lewis)