Data Sheet—Friday, September 30, 2016

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Data Sheet—Friday, September 30, 2016
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Welcome to Google’s G Suite era.

Google’s efforts to become a big business technology company continued Thursday with a rebranding of its cloud computing division as Google Cloud, which also includes its newly named business app unit G Suite. Yes, corporate rebrandings can sometimes be all marketing and little substance. In Google’s case, the company has so many different technology services ranging from database tools to calendar apps, it wants to simplify things by lumping everything into one big category.

Of course, in order for Google to compete with traditional enterprise vendors like Microsoft, it must do more than pull off name change. Google must offer customer service and support, which analysts have criticized Google for failing to do well. Google may have lots of powerful technology, but it doesn’t know how to nurture longstanding relationships with its business customers.

Brian Stevens, Google’s vice president of cloud platforms, told Fortune that one way Google plans to counter that notion is by hiring more professional services staff. In February, the company hired former VMware executive Jason Martin to oversee Google’s professional services team that will work directly with business leaders. Martin had a similar role at VMware under former VMware founder and now Google Cloud chief Diane Greene.

Stevens also said Google created a separate engineering-focused consulting unit that will teach customers how to use Google’s cutting-edge data center technology. The new team helped Google Cloud customer Niantic troubleshoot what went wrong when the company’s Pok?mon Go mobile game experienced major performance problems over the summer amid the crush of people playing the game.

It’s these kinds of close business relationships that could persuade companies to give Google a chance. Time will tell if Google is able to do to the John Deeres of the world what it could do to the makers of Pok?mon Go.

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Jonathan Vanian is a writer at Fortune. Email him. Share this essay.

 

BITS AND BYTES

THE DOWNLOAD

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This edition of Data Sheet was curated by Heather Clancy.

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