By Harmen Van der Linde, Senior Director Product Management, Intel Developer Cloud
The pace of our industry moves so fast that time feels like the most valuable commodity of all.
We at Intel know that shortening the product development cycle and time to market for our customers can be worth millions to them, and can make the difference between the success or failure of a product launch.
So what if we could give our customers a sneak peek at the future, and show them how their products will perform on emerging Intel platforms that haven’t even entered the marketplace yet?
That’s the goal of the Intel® Developer Cloud, a service platform that gives easy, early access to pre-release Intel technologies. You don’t need to download anything or configure hardware, just log in.
Clouds on the Horizon
Long before cloud computing became mainstream, Intel engineers started to imagine a day when we could use cloud technology to get our products to customers much, much sooner than we’d ever been able to, even earlier than we’d been able to share them with customers in our pilot programs. Even hardware and software for pilot programs can’t go out the door until they clear certain thresholds—security, legal, regulatory, and so on—but we realized that those thresholds would be much lower if we could make products available in a cloud environment.
We knew that someday, the cloud would let us give customers a chance to see what our newest products could do for them, and make it happen simpler, safer, and sooner.
That “someday” is here, with the rollout of the Intel Developer Cloud.
One of the biggest advantages of a cloud-based service platform is that it solves the thorny problem of software and hardware dependencies. That makes it much easier—and faster—to optimize workload performance and scale.
By using the Intel Developer Cloud to get early access to new Intel hardware and software for testing and development, you can get a head start with product prequalification and develop Intel-based solution offerings even before new Intel product release announcements.
Over time, you will be able to perform tasks like application performance benchmarking, optimization, and troubleshooting on the broadest possible range of Intel-based hardware and software. And a portfolio of cloud services will let you test and develop technology solutions for a wide range of use cases and applications.
Some people reading this might be thinking of other well-known cloud service providers (CSPs). There are similarities, to be sure. But the Intel Developer Cloud is really a specialized cloud offering. Instead of a cost-optimized commodity infrastructure, the Intel Developer Cloud offers full-stack deployment environments, preconfigured with the components developers need to optimize performance and scale for advanced workloads.
It really all gets back to time, though. Other cloud service providers just can’t give customers access to Intel’s pre-release products sooner than Intel can. It typically takes at least 6–12 months before external cloud providers begin to offer newly released Intel hardware and software. And that’s 6–12 months after the products are released. By offering its own cloud environment, Intel has complete control of new product technology deployments and can make new product capabilities available to our customers long before they’re released.
It’s not hard to imagine that a fully integrated and tested deployment environment with Intel-optimized software is going to appeal to software developers, large enterprises, and ecosystem partners, but it will also be a great resource for people in research and education.
To meet the needs of this wide range of users, the Intel Developer Cloud will have different service tiers. The Standard tier will feature free services, where users can get started with an Intel cloud service for limited evaluation and exploration. The free services on the Standard tier will give you everything you need to get started, with no need to hand over credit card information, but they will have certain service-specific usage restrictions and time limits.
The Premium tier will offer advanced cloud services where a usage-based fee structure may apply. All users will have access to Intel developer community support, but the Premier tier will also have dedicated help desk support.
Ahead of the official rollout, we are starting an Intel Developer Cloud beta trial for select prequalified customers. During the beta trial, approved developers and Intel partners will have access to Intel’s latest compute and accelerator platforms for testing and evaluation under an NDA.
The early access you can get from the Intel Developer Cloud complements in many ways Intel’s existing cloud platforms, like the Intel DevCloud and Intel AI DevCloud. At launch, the Intel Developer Cloud will have bare metal servers and VMs, with more and more configurations added throughout 2023, when we’ll also be migrating our other cloud services to the Intel Developer Cloud. Then, all in one place, you’ll be able to use Intel products like OpenVINO™ and the Intel® AI Analytics Toolkit to test and develop your applications on Intel technologies before they’re commercially available.
The Intel Developer Cloud is only one example of the new products, tools, and technologies Intel is developing as part of our developer-first strategy. By putting the needs of developers first and getting new technologies into our customers’ hands sooner, we are helping companies shorten their development times and speed time to market, saving them the most precious commodity of all—time.
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