Google BigQuery

Features, Pricing, Alternatives and More

Written by Maria Myre
Last updated

How much data can Google BigQuery handle? A lot. It's designed to run "lightning-fast" queries on massive amounts of data, up into the petabytes (a test query of 4TB of data, for example, ran in less than a minute).

Storing your data inside Google BigQuery is as simple as uploading your files or using the API to connect with a data source. Since the first 10GB of data is free, it's an easy solution whether you're starting small or just want to test the waters before going all-in. As a bonus, there's a wealth of publicly available datasets directly inside the program's interface. So if you're doing a research project that has to do with crime rates in San Francisco, for example, everything you need is at your fingertips.

Once the data is added to your Google BigQuery account, you can start running your analyses. These can be as simple or complex as you need, and are run using regular SQL queries. While the first TB of data processed is free, you may find that massive amounts of data quickly eat into the $5/TB processed charge. Fortunately, you can always connect with support to come to a more stable flat-rate price that aligns with the amount of data you query each month. The results from each analysis can be saved or downloaded as needed to access at a later date.

The API gives you and your team all the flexibility you need for storage and analysis, from real-time data viewing to exporting your data into a custom product dashboard or other data analysis platform. (And you can always export the data directly into Google Data Studio for easy visual representation.)

In short: If you find that you need to run queries on larger amounts of data than other programs (like MySQL) can easily handle, you may want to turn to Google BigQuery. Not only is it capable of processing massive datasets, but it's also a secure, protected environment where you can house your most important information and be confident that it will be automatically optimized and ready to access when you need it.

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Google BigQuery Pricing

  • Active storage starts at $0.020 per GB/month. (The first 10 GB is free each month.)

  • Long-term storage starts at $0.010 per GB/month. (The first 10 GB is free each month.)

  • Storage API starts at $1.10 per TB.

  • Streaming Inserts start at $0.010 per 200 MB. (You are charged for rows that are successfully inserted. Individual rows are calculated using a 1 KB minimum size.)

  • Queries (analysis) start at $5.00 per TB (The first 1 TB per month is free; flat rate pricing is available for high-volume customers.)

Google BigQuery Features

  • Manage and store your data in JSON table format.

  • Control access to your datasets, sharing it with only a few people or your entire company.

  • Run simple or complex SQL queries on your datasets.

  • Integrate Google BigQuery with outside applications to extract or insert data.

Google BigQuery Updates

New Integration: Scale Your Data Management with Google BigQuery

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