Google’s parent company, Alphabet, has reportedly courted the Pentagon in hopes of winning a major cloud computing contract known as the “Joint Warfighter Cloud Capability.” It is the successor to the defunct ‘war cloud’ project.
The tech behemoth has been “Aggressive Chasing” the contract, the New York Times reported Wednesday, stating: “four people familiar with the case.” Google considers the issue a priority and designates it as a “code yellow” emergency in internal documents, the report claims.
Google has reportedly been working hard behind the scenes to win the contract, diverting a significant portion of its resources and pulling engineers from other projects, to prepare a viable proposal for the Pentagon, the Times reported.
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Google Cloud chief executive officer Thomas Kurian reportedly met Tuesday with Air Force chief of staff General Charles Q. Brown to pitch the company’s cloud computing technologies. While it’s unclear whether the meeting led to an agreement between the parties, the Times reported that Google hoped to do so “Make the Case” for the services of the tech giant.
The Joint Warfighter Cloud Capability, part of the Pentagon’s multi-billion dollar modernization initiative, is a successor to the $10 billion Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI) cloud contract, which never materialized due to lengthy legal disputes.
Amazon expected to win the JEDI contract, but the Pentagon awarded it to Microsoft in 2019. The company’s CEO, Jeff Bezos, immediately disputed the decision, arguing that it was made because of: “personal mind” against him by then-President Donald Trump. After nearly two years of legal wrangling, the Pentagon finally pulled the plug on the multi-billion dollar project in July. Unlike JEDI, the JWCC will be involved: “multiple” seller.
While the Pentagon initially suggested that only Amazon and Microsoft were eligible for the contract, officials did not rule out the possibility of other bidders entering the equation after determining they can meet the specific requirements. The Pentagon said it completed the market survey last month, and the contracts will be awarded by April 2022.
Unveiling the initiative in July, the Department of Defense said the JWCC will boost “such warfighter capabilities as joint all domain command” and “artificial intelligence and data acceleration initiative.”
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