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Last week, the company launched Cloud Spanner, a new, fully managed database that's supposed to provide the transactional consistency of a traditional database plus the scalability and performance of a NoSQL database. It's based on the same systems that run the company's own Spanner database internally.
Usually, businesses have to pick either a traditional or a NoSQL database, and each comes with particular trade-offs. Traditional databases provide better transactional consistency, but can be hard to scale. NoSQL databases are better at scaling but sacrifice consistency.
Cloud Spanner is designed to reduce those trade-offs, and it's also delivered as a fully managed service. Among other things, that means Google will manage hardware, software and replication of content for a database that can span multiple data centers.
The service will be useful for companies that need millisecond-level consistency in their databases worldwide, according to Nick Heudecker, a research director at Gartner. In an interview, he called out financial services and advertising as two industries that might benefit from Cloud Spanner.
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