Amazon’s S3 storage service is popular among developers because it’s cheap, fast and highly available, but Backblaze might be about to shake that up for good.
The company, which is well known for unlimited file backup, has launched Backblaze B2 today to take on Amazon’s S3 service — at incredibly low prices.
Built on top of the custom storage pod infrastructure Backblaze designed itself, B2 costs just $0.005 per GB, compared with Amazon’s $0.022.
B2 launches into private beta this October for developers to start using before it becomes available widely later this year.
Not only is B2’s storage price cheaper than Amazon’s long-term backup service, Glacier, and Google’s Nearline, it beats everyone from Microsoft to Google on price — even at the cheapest tier. It will also beat them all on per gigabyte bandwidth out price, at $0.05.
That’s a compelling sell for companies with massive volumes of storage, with prices more than four times cheaper than any competitor.
For startups like Everpix, which collapsed as it struggled to pay for huge storage costs, B2 could mean businesses that require large amounts of storage become viable.
I talked with Backblaze CEO, Gleb Budman, who told me that it decided to build B2 after customers repeatedly asked if the company would make available a cloud storage platform.
Budman said that Backblaze’s backup service already stores more than 150 petabytes of data (that’s 150,000 terabytes, by the way) and adds 5 petabytes of storage every month for its existing service.
At launch, B2 will offer a RESTful API, command-line interface and Web utility for uploading files and will only charge for what you use.
All customers will receive versioned files, snapshots, reporting, caps and alerts as well as mobile access, regardless of how much they spend.
I was surprised by how much lower Backblaze’s pricing was and asked Budman if he expects to start a pricing war with Amazon, Microsoft and the other heavyweights. He said that he doesn’t expect them to respond at first, until developers start moving away from their service — but with such low prices, that could happen incredibly quickly.
Backblaze’s B2 service can be used for any application — you could build the next Dropbox or iCloud on top of the platform, or even use it for personal backups if apps add support.
B2 will launch into private beta in October before becoming available publicly with a service level agreement later this year.