Politics and cloud are two things that don’t always appear to go hand in hand, however in the last 22 months we’ve seen a trend where this is very much the case.
Let me take you back to June 2016: warm, sunny days (memories are usually rose tinted!) and a vote on the UK remaining in the EU – affectionately known as ‘brexit’.
What does this have to do with cloud?
The US dollar was trading at about $1.45 to the pound before the result, and fell sharply to $1.2068 in January 2017 – a huge drop.
As a result the cost of buying cloud from a vendor pricing in USD suddenly became more expensive through no other means than a political event. The service didn’t change but the underlying currency exchange did.
What did the vendors do?
Here’s the interesting part:
AWS continued to use the USD as their pricing unit – an approach unchanged since AWS’ creation in 2006.
Microsoft announced GBP price increases of between 13-22% for Office365 and Azure based on the fall in strength of the pound.
At the time Microsoft was widely criticised (as expected) but with other US products being adjusted based on this change in currency strength (thank you Apple…..) it seemed like this was the new normal.
But what now?
Reading today (17/04/18), the relative positions of the USD and GBP are now rather more interesting: