Amazon Web Services appears to be in the crosshairs of many large competitors these days. Following Microsoft earlier, now Hewlett-Packard is said to be eyeing Amazon's cut in the cloud market share with new solutions of its own.
See also: Cloud's price race to zero: Microsoft cuts Azure pricing, eyes Amazon
Zorawar Singh, senior vice president and general manager of HP's cloud services department, told The New York Times' Bits blog that HP is "not just building a cloud for infrastructure."
Rather, HP wants to include more business-focused features on a platform filled with more third-party apps and services. HP also plans to entice at least developers over to the platform with support and tools for the most common software languages (i.e. Ruby and Java, etc.).
Another twist is that customers will also be treated to an online store with software available for buying or renting for use in the HP public cloud. Billing and authentication details are still being worked out.
Before HP can even begin to seriously compete with Amazon's existing cloud offerings, HP will need to beef up its data center support, which currently only consists of sites in the United States.
By comparison, Amazon has multiple data centers in place across the U.S., Europe and Asia.
Although HP has had significant cloud strategies in place for some time now, the public cloud platform is getting a rather significant push now. As pointed out in the Bits blog post, this could have a lot to do with encouragement from CEO Meg Whitman, who joined HP last fall.
Since her appointment, she has been restructuring the company dramatically beyond just enterprise and cloud services, but also within other departments -- most notably with the PC and webOS units.