Google is offering $100,000 in Cloud Platform Credits for one year to developers who choose the Mountain View giant’s own Cloud-based platform over its competitors – most notably Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure.

The Cloud Platform for Startups initiative was announced today by Urs Hölzle, Google’s technical infrastructure SVP,  at the Google for Entrepreneurs Global Partner Summit. In order to qualify, startups must be enrolled in one of an array of Google-approved funding schemes (including, but not limited to, Accelerator, Incubator and VC), have less than $5mn in funding and less than $500,000 in annual revenue. Additionally startups will need to not have previously received Cloud Platform Credits and to be less than five years old. The deal comes with 24/7 technical support and access to the Google Solutions team.

“[We] want developers to focus on code” wrote director of developer relations Julie Pearl on the GCP blog today. “not worry about managing infrastructure. Starting today, startups can take advantage of this offer and begin using the same infrastructure platform we use at Google”

GCP has already joined the Cloudy triumvirate’s ‘race to the bottom’ on pricing, when it announced huge price drops in its Computing Services And Storage products in March of this year. Google Compute Engine charges were slashed by 32%, App Engine by 30%, cloud storage by 60% and BigQuery – Google’s Big Data database analysis tool – by 85%.

Amazon responded to the GCP cuts within 24 hours and Microsoft followed suit shortly after with comparable price-slashing on its Azure services, so it seems that the only way is up in the bid for Cloud development customers. Amazon currently offers $15,000 in credits to AWS startup customers, with Azure maintaining a very distant third with its offering of $150 Azure credits monthly.

In truth, any startup able to max out their free Google credit within a year  – such as Snapchat, which runs on GCP –  is already handling enough data to begin monetising, or has some seriously wasteful coding practices.