This Snowflake’s Summit was a roller coaster of emotions, but more often than not, we were thrilled with all the new announcements. With over 61+ sessions, we got to see some of Snowflake’s amazing new features, tons of use cases, and first-hand looks at how to use their new tools with step-by-step labs. Most of us are too busy to watch two days’ worth of webinars, but that’s where we come in – providing you with your weekly dose of Snowflake Solutions! We decided to help out by highlighting the most important announcements, as well as the sessions we thought were worth the watch!
This time around Snowflake announced that they have five main areas of innovation: data programmability, global data governance, platform optimization, connected industries, and powered by Snowflake. While magical upgrades and new tools mean more flexibility for users, the reality is that most of these new features are still in private preview, so we, the public, won’t see them in action for some time. Regardless, we’ll still go through the top areas of innovation:
One of the most significant improvements this year is the enhanced storage economics, resulting in reduced storage costs due to improved data compression. As a result, many will begin to see savings on storage for new data. Additionally, Snowflake has developed new usage dashboards, enabling users to better monitor and comprehend their usage and costs across the platform. While it appears that Snowflake is making progress in the direction of cost optimization, the subject has been challenging so far, and there are not enough safeguards in place to prevent warehouse sizes (and bills) from skyrocketing. If you’re interested in discovering the various ways your company can inadvertently lose money on Snowflake, as well as strategies for avoiding them, we invite you to register for our upcoming Cost Optimization webinar.
Global Data Governance:
Moving forward, we will discuss the six new data governance capabilities that have been added to the Snowflake platform. We will focus on the three that are most exciting.
Automatically detects personally identifiable information.
- Why is this cool? We can apply specific security controls to protect their data!
2. Row access policies:
Dynamically restrict the rows of data in the query based on the username, role, or other custom attributes.
- Why is this cool? We no longer need multiple secure views and can eliminate the need for maintaining data silos. That’s a win in our book.
3. Access History:
A new view that shows used and unused tables to produce reports.
- Why is this cool? You can see what’s bringing value and optimize storage costs based on what is frequently accessed or completely abandoned data. Who doesn’t love to save money?
Following we have two upcoming features that we thought were worth mentioning since they will be game-changers! These two features are Discover & Transact and Try Before You Buy, both of which will ease collaboration and data procurement between connected industries.
1. Discover and Transact:
Directly within the Snowflake Data Marketplace, a consumer can now discover data and purchase with a usage-based pricing model.
- This is truly cool because of the self-service aspect! By providing this feature, we can significantly reduce the cost of selling and delivering data to our valuable clients.
2. Try Before You Buy:
Now consumers can access sample data to make sure they’re getting all they need before signing that check.
- Why is this interesting? Everyone loves a free sample!
Probably the most important updates are under the data programmability umbrella. So, if you’re still with me, hang on a little longer, this is about to get interesting!
Some innovations are ready to be used now in public preview, so let’s check them out:
- SQL API: This new API enables customers to automate administrative tasks without having to manage infrastructure, there’s no need to maintain an external API management hub!
- Schema Detection: Now supports Parquet, Orc, Arvo, and hopefully more file formats in the future.
Exciting things to look forward to soon:
- Serverless Tasks: Snowflake will determine and schedule the right amount of computer resources needed for your tasks.
- Snowpark and Java UDFs: Snowpark is going to be the Snowflake developer’s new playground. It allows developers to bring their preferred languages directly into the platform. Java UDFS will also enable data engineers and developers to bring their custom code to Snowflake. This enables better performance on both sides!
- Unstructured Data Support: Soon, we will be able to treat unstructured data the same as structured data, with the ability to store, govern, process, and share.
- Machine Learning with Amazon SageMaker: A tool that will automatically build and insert the best machine-learning models into Snowflake!
In summary, Snowflake’s 2022 Summit exhibited several noteworthy novel features and updates, particularly in the domains of platform optimization, global data governance, and data programmability. Although a significant number of these features are still in private preview, they provide a glimpse into Snowflake’s future direction and potential.
Keep an eye out for more updates and guidance from IT Strategists on how to leverage Snowflake’s tools and solutions to their fullest potential. Be sure to check out our blog for more news and information.