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The point of the platform is that it's accessible to others. the "They" above refers only to Google not to third party developers which is the point of the whole article (unless you're Steve Jobs you can't know in advance what people want.. the best you can hope to do is create an extensible platform that third party developers will create products that people want to use and thus create an ecosystem). This is what he refers to when he talks about google providing parts when people want a car.
Having used both AWS and google's offering, there's no comparison. Amazon gives me everything I need (and then some) to host a successful product.
3 years, 6 months ago on Google Engineer: “Google+ is a Prime Example of Our Complete Failure to Understand Platforms”