Apple set to flip switch on North Carolina data center soon

“Based on a talk with Apple executives, Apple’s North Carolina data center should finally come online this spring, says Bernstein Research analyst Toni Sacconaghi,” MacNN reports.

“The facility was originally scheduled to come online by the end of 2010, but was delayed for unknown reasons,” MacNN reports. “Apple executives later claimed a new spring target, but until now there had been no subsequent update on progress.”

MacNN reports, “One factor that may have delayed the data center is the sudden death of the project’s director, Olivier Sanche, in November. Sanche was particularly experienced, having done streamlining at companies such as AT&T and eBay.

Read more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Fred Mertz” for the heads up.]

17 Comments

  1. I’m guessing the “flip of the switch” won’t happen silently. In usual Apple style, there will be a huge announcement complete with blocked out windows at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. We’ll have plenty of time to prepare for this change.

    1. Not so. This could be the first real test of the billion dollar server farms real power. Why invite a small hand full when you can “Think Different” and invite the world!

      1. You’re kidding, right? Are you saying that the iPad 2 announcement (among many others) was just to invite a few? EVERYTHING Apple announces is broadcast to the world via tons of free media coverage. Even those that start at a small event center for the arts.

    2. I’m thinking just the opposite; flip the switch without fanfare. Apple might make some local noise, to pay homage to the community, but will save any major announcements for those occasions when Apple offers new and/or upgraded services.

      The place has been operational for months already but I don’t see Steve Jobs making a big deal out of it by taking the stage to discuss the facilities capabilities. Ho hum.

      What we can expect in the coming months are major changes to existing services, including the addition of new ones. Those will be cause for media production and marketing.

  2. I reckon parts of it are already in operation and that when it goes on line 100% they won’t tell us, it will be announced in a passing comment … or are people expecting a count down on Apple.com

    1. @skylark: Agreed. After the fiasco of their not-ready-for-prime-time roll out of MobileMe, I expect they are going to tell the hell out of it before letting the public loose on it.

    2. Yep, it is already up and running. There is no need to even make an announcement. What would they do, have a new years eve type countdown and a giant switch that bursts with the Apple logo when they flip it? Its a data center and so it will be running behind the scenes, since it has no real affect on the day to day work flow of Mac users therefore it will not need a “Grand Opening”. By the way, were are the current servers facilities and what do they look like? I bet 99 percent of computer users dont know, nor do they care what type of data center is running behind the scenes. The new data center will be implemented in phases and the server load will slowly be increased as sectors of it pass testing and it is assured all the kinks are worked out. I can see Steve including “Oh . and the NC data center has been up and running for the past year and is performing beyond expectation” in his opening remarks when he summarizes that the iPad 2 has gone on to sell 15 million units in the 1st quarter of its release.

  3. It makes sense that this will be a multi-purpose facility. From iTunes streaming to MobileMe hosting. I would guess that Apple already have some of that running and gradually are passing the load to the NC centre.
    Flipping the switch may involve added to that new mobileme features or additional cloud based services. Apple could announce that in a presentation depending on how expansive that is.
    Can’t see Apple buying Netflix. The studios would shut it down in an instance.
    I could see music subscription services in the same way as Pandora.

    1. What’s your reason for saying that the studios would should Netflix down in an instant if Apple acquired it? I’m just curious and not faulting your opinion. Why should the studios care who’s handling Netflix if they’re getting paid for it? Apple might be able to do it more efficiently than Netflix can. Apple would certainly be able to bring more credit card accounts to the table and we know the studios certainly won’t be turning any money aside. Are you thinking some sort of monopoly?

      1. Historically Apple have had a hard time getting deals with the studios for their content. The studios are worried Apple will have the same success as they have had with music and in turn will lose their control over content pricing and distribution.
        I agree with you that Apple could sell a lot of content if they were given the breaks that others get. The problem is that the studios are afraid it will hurt other revenue sources.
        Netflix appear to have a good deal with the studios. I read somewhere that this may expire soon. What the studios haven’t realized is that Netflix has killed the physical rental business and is also impact online sales.
        I think Netflix has a great service and business. If Apple were to offer the same deal it would be very successful. Maybe too successful for the studios liking because it could affect other revenue sources.

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