After two years of awarding the contract to Microsoft, the Pentagon has decided to abandon the JEDI program. The Defense Department announced the cancellation of the program on July 6th. It is now said to be moving in the multi-cloud direction to better meet its warfighter needs.
What is the JEDI Program, and Why Was It Cancelled?
For the uninitiated, JEDI, which stands for Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure, was designed to accelerate cloud adoption and digitize the US Department of Defense operations. In addition, it would have facilitated communication among the military personnel while improving national security at the same time.
The tender for the program was sought in 2017 during the Trump era. Several cloud companies, including Amazon Web Services, Microsoft, and Oracle, applied for it. In 2018, the $10 billion worth of the contract was awarded to Microsoft.
But Amazon alleged that the bidding process was unfair and was set up to benefit Microsoft. Following this allegation, the contract was halted.
Amazon sought more transparency in the process. The court alleged that the department was biased when awarding the contract since former President Donald Trump had a feud with then-Amazon boss Jeff Bezos.
Subsequently, the Pentagon terminated the contract and made way for the new multi-cloud initiative.
What is the Multi-cloud Initiative?
The multi-cloud initiative is the new cloud environment program adopted by the Pentagon in which it will procure cloud services from multiple vendors rather than a single one.
The initiative is officially known as the Joint Warfighter Cloud Capability (JWCC).
Other than the dispute over the bidding process, the main reason why the US Department of Defense (DoD) moved away from JEDI was due to its evolving needs.
Cloud computing capabilities had significantly changed since 2017, when it first initiated the process. The future doctrine plans for the US military include domains other than land, water, and air and extend into cyber and space.
The DoD needs the different units to be able to communicate, process, and share data among themselves. But it doesn't want to rely on a single vendor either.
The JWCC is planned to be more versatile and secure than JEDI. Although very little is known about the JWCC's technical demands, one thing for certain is that JEDI no longer meets its requirements.
Benefits of Multi-cloud Approach
There are several benefits to a multi-cloud approach over the single-cloud design. Here are some of the main advantages:
Find the Best Cloud Products
When working with a single cloud provider, you're limited to the functionalities of that particular provider. But cloud services have evolved, and each provider has niche products that are better than the others.
In a multi-cloud environment, you can pick the best cloud products from each service provider.