Google has decided not to compete for a cloud computing contract with the Pentagon, Bloomberg reports this evening. The contract was valued at as much as $10 billion, but Google now says it could conflict with its Google Cloud values.
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The project is known as the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure cloud – or JEDI for short. The goal is to transition Defense Department data to a commercial cloud system, with companies set to submit bids on October 12th. The contract could run as long as 10 years.
In a statement, a Google spokesman explained that it has decided not to bid for the JEDI contract because it might not “align with our AI Principles” and because some of the contract is “out of scope” with its current government certifications.
The Google spokesman noted, however, that it is working to support the U.S. government through cloud services in “many ways.”
“We are not bidding on the JEDI contract because first, we couldn’t be assured that it would align with our AI Principles,” a Google spokesman said in a statement. “And second, we determined that there were portions of the contract that were out of scope with our current government certifications.”
The spokesman added that Google is “working to support the U.S. government with our cloud in many ways.”
Additional, Google said that it would have been interested in bidding on “portions” of the project, but the JEDI contract was not open to multiple vendors. According to the Google spokesman, the company believes that a “multi-cloud approach” would be of best interest to the government:
“Had the JEDI contract been open to multiple vendors, we would have submitted a compelling solution for portions of it,” the Google spokesman said. “Google Cloud believes that a multi-cloud approach is in the best interest of government agencies, because it allows them to choose the right cloud for the right workload.”
Google employees have expressed opposition to the company working with the U.S. government on technology that integrates augmented reality and machine learning. It’s unclear if these concerns played a major part in Google’s decision not to big for the JEDI contract.