What Does Cloud Computing Actually Mean? What Are the Benefits?
Cloud computing is the provision of computing services via the internet (referred to as “Cloud”), which includes storage, analytics, networking, intelligence, servers, software, and databases to deliver fast and seamless development, variable resources, and save a significant amount in costs as a result of an increased level of output.
Cloud solutions are often delivered on a pay-as-you-use subscription plan. This means you only pay for the precise services you use and nothing more, making it easier for businesses to cut down on operation costs, manage their infrastructure more proficiently, and scale seamlessly as an organization’s various needs expand.
A common example of cloud computing is OneDrive for Business. It allows users to save various types of files online (in the cloud) and access such files anytime and anywhere as long as users have access to the internet.
Cloud Computing Types
All services for cloud computing solutions are not the same, regardless of how similar they are. Also, not all solutions are suitable for all organizations. As a result, various cloud computing solutions have been developed to provide several different solutions to various organizations based on their needs.
First, you have to establish the type of cloud deployment or cloud computing architecture that your required cloud services will be executed on. Typically, services on the cloud are deployed via three different paths: public, private or hybrid.
Public Cloud computing is owned and run by a third-party cloud service provider. Such providers render their computing resources such as servers and storage over the internet. On a public cloud, the cloud provider owns and manages all the hardware, software as well as other supporting infrastructure. Users can access the cloud service online and manage their accounts via a web browser. An example of a public cloud is Microsoft Azure.
Private Cloud computing is one in which the infrastructure and services are maintained on a private network. The resources of this service for cloud computing is used solely by a single organization or business. A private cloud can be on-site at the organization’s datacenter. However, some organizations subscribe to third-party services providers to help them host their private clouds.
Hybrid services for cloud computing combines both private and public clouds together through a technology that allows the sharing of applications and data between both services on the cloud. By allowing the sharing of apps and data between both cloud computing types, organizations enjoy the benefits of advanced flexibility, more deployment options and strengthening their security.
Types of Computing Services on Cloud
All computing services on cloud are classified into four categories:
- Infrastructure as a service (IaaS)
- Platform as a service (PaaS)
- Software as a service (SaaS)
- No Server or Serverless
All four are sometimes referred to as the services for cloud computing stack because they can be built on top of one another. Understanding precisely what they are and what makes them different will make it easier for businesses to opt for the right one.
Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)
IaaS is the most basic category of a cloud computing solution. Once you opt for IaaS, you are required to rent an IT infrastructure, including virtual machines (VMs) and servers, operating systems, and networks etc. from a cloud provider on a subscription basis.
Platform as a Service (PaaS)
PaaS is a cloud computing solution that provides an on-demand platform for the development, test, delivery and management of software apps. PaaS was created to provide an easy platform for developers to create mobile or web apps and eradicate the need for setting up and managing the core infrastructure of servers, databases and network, and storage required for app development.
Software as a Service (SaaS)
SaaS cloud computing refers to a method for delivering software apps online, as an on-demand service and usually based on a subscription. SaaS cloud providers are responsible for hosting and managing the software apps as well as any underlying infrastructure. In addition, they are responsible for maintenance, software upgrades and security patching. Users can connect to or access the apps via the internet through a web browser or via their mobile devices.
No Server (Serverless) Computing
Serverless Computing overlaps with PaaS. Precisely, serverless cloud computing specializes on developing app functionality without the need to spend time managing the infrastructures and servers needed to do so. In serverless computing, the cloud provider is responsible for the server management, setup, and capacity planning. One of the key benefits of serverless is that they are event-driven and highly scalable – this means they only use resources when a precise trigger or function happens.
Benefits of Cloud Computing Types
Cloud computing services is a game-changer compared to the traditional methods organizations view IT resources. Here are some of the key benefits of cloud computing solutions:
Aside from cost, on-site datacenters often require a huge amount of time for “racking and stacking” of building hardware, software patching as well as other resources-consuming IT management tasks. Nonetheless, cloud computing eliminates the need for any of these resources and time-consuming IT chores. This means the IT team can channel their expertise and available organization resources into other aspects of the business to trigger better business growth and expansion.
Enhances Performance on Worldwide Network
The largest and most reliable cloud computing services run on a global network of secure datacenters, which are consistently upgraded to the latest versions of fast and efficient computing hardware. This is far better than a single on-site datacenter because it guarantees reduced network latency for software and lower costs as a result of increased output
Cloud computing allows data mirroring at multiple surplus sites on the cloud service providers network. As a result, cloud computing makes data backup, disaster recovery, and business continuity less expensive and a lot easier.
Requires Lower Cost
Cloud computing practically eradicates the capital cost of purchasing hardware and software, as well as the building and management of on-site datacenters. Such expenses often include the cost of racks of servers, 24hrs electricity for constant power supply and cooling, hiring experts to oversee and manage the infrastructure, etc. You no longer have to bother about all of these costs once you opt for cloud computing services. The best part is you only subscribe for what you need and your payment won’t exceed that.
Speed is one of the key features of cloud computing services. This is because cloud computing solutions are often on-demand and offered as self-service. As a result, you can set up and implement computing resources with just a few mouse clicks. The best part is you can do this anywhere as long as you have access to the internet. You’re no longer restricted to the location of your business. This flexibility makes it easier for businesses to accelerate their service delivery.
Propels Global Scaling
Cloud computing makes it easier for businesses to scale endlessly. This means that cloud computing makes it easier for organizations to provide the right amount of IT resources for optimum results. For example, a business can have access to more or less computing resources, access, bandwidth, and storage, etc. precisely as required and in the most preferred location.
Presently cyber threats and malware are more widespread than ever. Nonetheless, many cloud services providers initiate a broad set of policies, controls and technologies that reinforces their entire security. This is done to guarantee the best possible security for data, apps and infrastructure.
What you can Accomplish with services in the Cloud
Here are some of the key things you can accomplish with cloud computing services:
- Building cloud-native apps
- Data storage backup and recovery
- Efficient and seamless data analysis
- Streaming audio and visual content
- Embed intelligence
- Testing and building apps
- Delivering software on-demand
If you are looking for an experienced expert to help assist you through decisions around Cloud Computing please feel free to reach out to schedule a call to discuss.
With over 25 years of experience in Information Technology and Management Consulting, Errin O’Connor has led hundreds of large-scale enterprise implementations from Business Intelligence, Power BI, Office 365, SharePoint, Exchange, IT Security, Azure and Hybrid Cloud eﬀorts for over 165 Fortune 500 companies.