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As global organizations continue to double down on data-driven decision-making, Snowflake is doing everything it can to make its data cloud their preferred “platform of choice.”

At its annual Snowday event, the Montana-based company – known for handling both data warehouse and data lake needs (among other workloads) – announced improvements to its platform’s key elements such as the elastic performance engine and Snowgrid technology. The move, it said, will provide enterprises with a faster querying experience for improving overall data cloud economics as well as streamlined collaboration capabilities. 

“Our success is predicated on our customers being successful when using Snowflake, which is why we continually strive to deliver improved performance and economic value for customers,” Christian Kleinerman, senior vice president of product at Snowflake, said. “With one single product, we can innovate faster, and deliver improvements that enable our customers with a unified experience across clouds and regions, so they can protect their data at cloud scale, operate more efficiently, and collaborate globally in new ways to further mobilize their data.”

Improvements for faster queries, saving money

Snowflake’s elastic performance engine, which is basically the heart of the platform, is getting a much-needed query acceleration service. The feature, currently in public preview, will help enterprises accelerate parts of outsized queries (queries that use more resources than typical ones) by providing a burst of additional resources without needing to scale up overall compute. This way, outlier queries could be easily executed without increasing resource consumption – and the cost to the company. 

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Further, Snowflake said it is making the ability to eliminate joins on key columns generally available and improving search optimization for faster searches and point lookups. It has also debuted new account usage details, which provide enterprises with an easier way to run the cost-benefit analysis of the services.

For instance, companies will be able to determine the magnitude and impact of data loads or modifications on tables through new history views (currently private preview) and lower costs with search optimization now supporting column selection (public preview) for data optimized for searches. Teams can also now analyze long-running and time-consuming queries more easily and identify and resolve performance problems before they impact the end user through programmatic access to query metrics.

Snowflake’s cross-cloud Snowgrid improvements

Snowgrid allows the exchange of metadata, enabling all Snowflake regions to know each other through one seamless and connected experience. With the latest improvements, the company is improving the cross-cloud capabilities of Snowgrid with a focus on three key aspects: collaboration, data governance and business continuity.

Collaboration

On the collaboration front, Snowgrid is getting new listing discovery controls and cross-cloud auto-fulfillment capabilities. The former, as the company explained, will make it easier for providers to share data listings while preserving privacy, while the latter will enable them to make data immediately accessible and up-to-date for consumers, without manual intervention. The offerings will be supported with richer analytics to help providers delve into how their listings are being accessed and used.

Data governance

To improve cross-cloud governance and help enterprises better comply with international regulations, Snowflake is introducing automated data protections, where tag-based masking can automatically assign a designated policy to sensitive columns. The company has also improved search optimization to add support for tables with masking and row access policies.

Business continuity

Lastly, Snowflake is enhancing data replication capabilities designed to ensure business continuity in the case of a disaster. Under this, the company is adding seamless pipeline failover, which will ensure enterprises’ streams and tasks are also replicated along with their accounts, databases, policies and metadata. This way, their data pipelines will run seamlessly on secondary accounts in case something goes wrong. 

Notably, Snowflake is also testing an intuitive new UI to make failover account replication easier to set up and manage.

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