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British-based cloud storage and IaaS provider, Memset, has today become the latest supplier to muscle in on the IaaS price war with a significant reduction of their hourly Miniserver VM® virtual server and Memstore cloud storage solutions.

Memset has reduced the hourly rate of smaller virtual machines (VMs); VM4000; 1x0.8GHz Xeon cores with 2GB RAM and 160GB RAID1 local storage - to just £0.040/hour ($0.060/h) compared to Amazon’s EC2 for a comparable machine (1 ECU with 1.7GB RAM and 160GB storage) of £0.043/hour ($0.065/h). 

Kate Craig-Wood, Memset’s MD, said, “Apples for apples, we are keeping our hourly Miniserver VMs slightly cheaper than Amazon EC2's EU (Ireland) pricing, proving that British small businesses with a focus on automation and open source has the ability to compete head-to-head with US heavyweights.”

Memset has only needed to reduce the pricing on smaller VM instances since they have been significantly cheaper than EC2 for extra large (7.5GB) and double extra large (15GB) VM instances for some time - currently 27% and 45% cheaper respectively. The high-end Miniserver VMs do come with about 25% less storage than comparable Amazon VMs but Memset provide it as guaranteed-persistent instance storage whereas Amazon's is non-persistent.

Memset has also reduced the 0-1TB storage tier for Memstore to £0.055/GB/month ($0.089/GB/m) compared to Amazon’s S3 £0.063/GB/month ($0.095/GB/m). Similar reductions have been made across all storage tiers making Memstore's headline price cheaper than Amazon S3 across the range. 

“Memstore is not only much cheaper, but we don’t charge for transactions which can mount up alot on S3. Our object durability sits between S3’s standard and reduced redundancy tiers at 99.999999%, a level that most of our customers are very happy with. Memstore prices are now almost the same as S3's reduced redundancy tier for an extra three nines' durability,” concluded Craig-Wood.

As a large number of businesses look for ways to securely store data whilst simultaneously saving on IT infrastructure costs, Memstore will attract more enterprise customers over the coming months, especially those worried about their data being handed over to the US authorities under the Patriot Act. This is bad news for security conscious IaaS consumers using Amazon or Rackspace, but good news for British providers like Memset who are wholly owned and sited within the UK!

Optimising Efficiency

Memset’s IaaS service uses the open source Xen hypervisor together with commodity Dell hardware and big data analytics to optimise efficiency, providing vast economies of scale which are passed onto customers.

Aggressive penetration tests of Memset’s Miniserver VM service has seen them secure IL2 accreditation under the UK G-Cloud project with Government IL3 hosting in their sights. Memset’s revised pricing is also available to public sector customers up to IL2 level and Memset is hoping to limit IL3 to 50% above normal pricing.

Memset has substantial experience in operating a very low margin business, maintaining the lowest pricing for VMs in Britain for many years.