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The Future of Cloud is AI: Google Cloud Next 2024

Justin Ryburn
Justin RyburnField CTO

Cloud NetworksAI


From infrastructure and chipsets to data solutions and development tools, it’s clear that artificial intelligence will play a massive role in the future of the cloud. Read Justin Ryburn’s latest recap to learn about many of the exciting unveilings at Google Cloud Next 2024.


The tech world was abuzz with excitement as Google Cloud Next 2024 unfolded, offering a glimpse into the future of cloud computing and digital innovation. Held at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas, this conference serves as a platform for unveiling groundbreaking advancements, fostering collaboration, and inspiring businesses to reimagine their digital strategies. Let’s delve into the highlights and key takeaways from this monumental event.

A new cloud venue

The event’s relocation from the Moscone Center in San Francisco to the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas had a profound impact on its ambiance and energy. The vibrant atmosphere of Las Vegas infused the event with a new sense of liveliness and excitement. It’s fascinating to observe how the change in setting can influence an event’s overall tone and perception.

Additionally, Google’s heightened marketing efforts surrounding this event seem to have contributed to the buzz and anticipation. This strategic move showcases the event’s significance and reflects the growing importance of such gatherings as platforms for major announcements and industry developments.

AI takes center stage

As expected, AI was a significant focus at Next ’24. Google emphasized its commitment to a comprehensive AI platform, offering both its own solutions and extensibility for partner-developed tools. This multi-layered approach empowers businesses to leverage AI across various stages, from infrastructure and chipsets to data solutions and development tools.

The focus wasn’t just on internal innovation; Google highlighted partnerships that expand the capabilities of its AI ecosystem. Attendees learned about new AI-powered features coming to Google Workspace, including the intriguing “Vids” – a video creation app designed specifically for work. If you have not checked out Google’s chatbot, Gemini, you really should. I’ve found it to be better quality for most responses than OpenAI’s ChapGPT.

Beyond AI: A cloud for all needs

While AI dominated the headlines, Next ’24 wasn’t a one-trick pony. There were announcements across the cloud spectrum, including:

  • Enhanced security: New additions like the AI-powered security add-on for Google Drive and extended Data Loss Prevention (DLP) controls for Gmail showcase Google’s commitment to robust cloud security.
  • Distributed cloud developments: Google Distributed Cloud (GDC) received a significant upgrade, achieving key compliance certifications and integrating advanced threat prevention technology from Palo Alto Networks.

Cross-cloud network

Google Cloud Next 2024 had some exciting announcements regarding Cross-Cloud Networking. Here’s a quick rundown:

  • Cross-Cloud Network announcement: A blog post titled “What’s new for networking at Next ’24” highlights Cross-Cloud Network as a key innovation that simplifies connecting and securing workloads across various cloud environments. It emphasizes the benefits of a service-centric approach, potentially lowering TCO by up to 40%.
  • Enhanced Private Service Connect: One of the announcements detailed Private Service Connect transitivity over Network Connectivity Center. Currently in preview, this improvement allows services in a spoke VPC (Virtual Private Cloud) to be readily accessible from other spoke VPCs.
  • Cloud NGFW Enterprise goes GA: Cloud NGFW Enterprise (formerly Cloud Firewall Plus) achieved Generally Available status. This offering provides network threat protection powered by Palo Alto Networks and network security posture controls for organization-wide perimeters and Zero Trust micro-segmentation.

In closing

If you missed Next ’24, don’t worry! Google Cloud offers complimentary access to on-demand content from the event. This allows you to delve deeper into specific announcements, keynotes, and sessions that pique your interest.

Whether you’re an AI enthusiast or simply looking to optimize your cloud development and deployment, Google Cloud Next 2024 offers a glimpse into the future. With its focus on innovation and comprehensive solutions, Google Cloud is poised to be a significant player in the ever-evolving cloud landscape.

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