Pros and Cons of Cloud Computing Platforms to Know Before You Finalize
With the increasing demand for cloud computing platforms in the market, large players are marking their space to giving tough competition to each other. Due to the constant evolution of technology, market and customer requirements, the competition of leadership is also fiercely increasing. There are many cloud computing players in the market who trying to make their own space in the industry. Let’s check out the cloud computing players in the industry:
Out of the above players, clearly there are three major cloud computing platform providers namely:
- Amazon Web Services (AWS)
- Microsoft Azure
- Google Cloud Platform (GCW)
1. Major Market Share
If you are planning to launch Platform as a Service (PaaS) or Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) then AWS, Azure and Google Cloud Platform (GCW) is more ideal choice. All three of the cloud computing vendors have their own strength and weaknesses depending on the customer requirements and network scenarios. Below we have evaluated each and every platform based on their positives and negatives so that enterprise customers planning to build their infrastructure on cloud can make their right choice.
Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud platform can be considered as the pioneer in the cloud platform because it has launched so many cloud solutions and other players are following the path with certain innovation. As per the Synergy Group report of 2018, AWS has the major market share over other players holding 51% market.
Whereas, the Microsoft Azure is a common choice for enterprise looking for SaaS platform. And GCW is a strong player gaining popularity rapidly in the market and they are utilizing the major market penetration through high discounts.
2. Strength Analysis of Cloud Computing Vendors – AWS Vs Azure Vs GCW
Amazon Web Services (AWS)
Amazon has invested a lot in the research and development to launch vast set of tools which is constantly increasing. Having a strong technically strong platform, it has become a common choice for most companies, developers and service providers. But because of the confusing pricing structure and major focus over the public cloud infrastructure rather than Private or Hybrid cloud, AWS lacks the interoperability comparatively.
One of the tough competitors of AWS and exceptionally innovated platform for enterprise grade cloud platform which has the capability to offer same level of exception results as AWS. If you are an enterprise and if you are using Windows servers for managing infrastructure then you will find Azure more compatible to access and migrate. The strength of Azure is it can seamlessly interoperate with your data centers offering a compatible haven for hybrid cloud.
A strong competitor in the market with strong muscle power, Google is offering disrupting market competition to the players with its core focus on the enterprise grade solution. With so many popular products up and running in the market, the trust level of GCW is also higher in the market among enterprise customers. Because of its profound knowledge and expertise in AI, Deep Learning, Machine Learning and Data Analytics, market is anticipating cloud combined hybrid solution from Google.
3. Cloud Computing Platform Adoption Rate
As per the recent report from RightScale, the public cloud adoption is constantly increasing and the enterprises are leveraging the services beyond just computing. Most of the companies are using the cloud platform for storage, data analytics, network services, integrations and extended services. Among all the major services, DBaaS, Data Warehouse and Push notification services has gained more popularity in 2019.
4. Pros and Cons of Cloud Computing Platform
Amazon Web Services (AWS) Advantages and Disadvantages
The major strength of the AWS platform is the dominance over the public cloud platform gained in past few years. Within a span of a decade, AWS has become the market leader for in Magic Quadrant of IaaS platform, as per Gartner. The growing demand and ability to cater the current and future scope of requirements from the customers for advanced tools and applications makes AWS undoubtedly powerful platform.
As per the Gartner report, AWS is mature, ready to cater large enterprise requirements, and capable enough to manage and govern large user base as well as resources.
The only weakness of AWS is the pricing which is lowered by AWS frequently, and enterprises are worried about the cost structure and manage the cost of AWS for running high volume of data and workloads. Regardless of the cons of AWS, it is still opted by majority of organizations for wide variety of operations.
Microsoft Azure Advantages and Disadvantages
Although Microsoft Azure marked its footprint late in the cloud market, it jump started quickly because the comprehensive ground work it had done by following the pioneers. With complete stack and capability to offer Windows Server, Office, SQL server, Sharepoint, etc. on cloud.
The simple strategical success of Azure cloud platform is the existing Windows customer base which they have leveraged to offer a cloud integrated solution. And the current need in the market was a solution that had better interoperability on cloud than other players. Microsoft Azure took the benefit of the need and gained the second popular position in the market. There are several Microsoft enterprise customers who have signed service level contracts.
The only disadvantage that is observed is, as per the Gartner report, some of the enterprise grade applications of Azure seems to have imperfections and less enterprise ready than it is expected. However, like every large solution with minor imperfection, Azure strongly holds the cloud market share.
Google Cloud Platform Advantages and Disadvantages
The strength of Google is Big Data and Analytics which is the core reason cloud has been given birth. Enterprise customer required the freedom of storing, automating, managing, and analyzing large data and processes. Google developed Kubernetes standard that is now offered by AWS and Azure. The ability to handle large workloads, intelligence of machine learning and speedy response time makes Google a stable and apt platform for cloud.
Google should have been the pioneer in cloud platform, if it had extended its google cloud based products earlier AWS, but it launched its services pretty late. Moreover, the current set of features and services of Google Cloud are also different than its competitor. Google also does not have the amount of data centers available with AWS or Azure.
On the disadvantage side, the GCW is looked as an alternate solution and not as a strategic platform provider as per Gartner. In addition, organizations which are more open source centric or DevOps centric choose GCP.
5. Cloud Computing Vendor Comparison
Amazon Web Service (AWS) Compute:
AWS Elastic Compute Cloud
The first cloud service launched by AWZ was the Elastic Compute Cloud that is known as EC2 as well. As per Amazon, EC2 is a web service that offers secured resizable cloud compute capacity over the cloud. It is highly compatible feature as it offers wide range of instances, support Linux and Windows, bare metal instances, GPU, auto-scaling and much more. Free offer of AWS includes EC2 for 750 hours/pm till 12 months.
AWS Containers Services
AWS container services are one of the most popular things because of the support for Docker, Kubernetes, Fargate service and cluster management. In addition, it also has support for virtual private cloud which is called Lightsail, Batch, and Elastic Beanstalk for enhancing the web applications as well as other services.
Microsoft Azure Compute
Virtual Machines (VM)
The compute services of Azure is called virtual machines which supports almost all the server types including Linux, SQL, Oracle, Windows, SAP and IBM. It also has the enhanced capabilities to support hybrid cloud, security and interoperable with other Microsoft software. In order to strongly compete with AWS, it also has a wide range of instances, GPU, AI, Machine Learning and high performance computing options. Just like free AWS offer, Microsoft also offers 750 hours per month of VM for a year.
The auto scaling version of Azure is called Virtual Machine Scale Sets which comes with two container services known as Azure Container Services which is based on the Kubernetes, and it uses Docker Hub and Container Registry for management. Just like the AWS beanstalk used for the scalability of Web applications, Azure also offers Batch services and Cloud services. For applications with microservices architecture, Azure offers a unique offering known as Service Fabric.
In comparison with the AWS and Azure platform, the GCP’s catalog is slightly lesser currently and the primary service offered by GCP is compute engine. The best thing of the compute engine is it offers predefined machine types, seconds based billing, support from Linux and windows, automated discounts, and environment friendly data centers. Free offer from Google includes F1 microsense instance per month for a year.
Enterprise architectures which are interested in deploying containers can use Kubernetes. Just like other cloud vendors in the market, GCP also offers containers and microservices. The specialty of Google and current complete focus is on Kubernetes to gain maximum expertise.
6. Storage Comparison of AWS – Google – Azure
Amazon Web Services (AWS) Storage
SSS to EFS
AWS has a wide range of storage services which includes the Simple Storage Service (S3), Elastic Block Storage (EBS), and Elastic File System (EFS). Each and every service has its responsibility like S3 is used for storing the objects, EBS is used for persistent block storage for usage with EC2, and EFS is for storing files. One of the most innovative storage solutions of AWS include Storage Gateway which helps in hybrid environment.
Database and Archiving
AWS offers a wide range of storage options on database side, which includes:
- Relational Database Service (RDS)
- DynamoDB NoSQL database
- ElastiCache in-memory data store
- Redshift data warehouse
- Neptune graph database
- Database Migration Service
The Glacier service of AWS is used for the long term archiving services at low cost price. The Storage Gateway is also used for back-up and archive.
The storage services offered by Azure is called Blob Storage which is REST based option for storing objects of unstructured data, large workload ques, storing files and disks. For big data applications Azure offers data lake store.
Azure database storage has multiple options including
- SQL Database
- Database for MySQL
- Database for PostgreSQL
In addition to the above, Azure also offers warehouse services, Cosmos DB, and Table storage for NoSQL data. For in-service memory services, Azure offers Redis Cache and for hybrid storage it offers Server Stretch Database. Microsoft also offers extensive back up, site recovery and archiving services.
Compared to other players, Google Platform has lesser number of storage options. But cloud storage is the unified storage option which includes the persistent disk option. Similar to the AWS snowball, Google also offers Transfer Appliance for online transfer services.
SQL and NoSQL
Google offers cloud based SQL database and Cloud Spanner which has been designed and developed for critical workloads. For NoSQL it offers Cloud Bigtable and Cloud Datastore. As of now Google does not have backup and archive services.
7. Pricing Comparison
Comparing the pricing structure of all the three major players of the cloud vendors which is a tricky area to generalize, however some common points can be listed.
Pricing of AWS
The pricing structure of AWS is difficult to describe and list but it has its own calculator which requires several variable inputs for actual cost as it uses granular costing method. It is the thing that makes it most confusing pricing structure and difficult to get accurate estimate.
Pricing of Azure
Microsoft Azure pricing structure is nothing less simple than AWS and it has situational based discounts that adds to the puzzle. Unless you consult with cloud service providers or have considerable experience, it is difficult to understand.
Pricing of GCP
The major strategy of Google popularity speedily gaining in the market is the pricing strategy which it has well placed to ensure that customers can get what they need at the desired friendly pricing. Flexible contracts and high discounts are the game winning stance of GCP to gain dominance over the cloud market.
What’s your choice?
Certain organizations will be specific about any cloud vendor while others need the right guidance based on their business requirements and future scope. Choosing the right platform is important because moving from one platform to another is a challenging task.
If you are looking for a platform with broadest services that you can leverage and pricing is not a major challenge then AWS is best for you.
But if the business servers are running on windows and wish integrate with other Microsoft software then Azure is the best choice for you.
If you are a start-up and mid-sized company which is rapidly scaling up with large volume of user data, user base and resources then GCP is ideal.
Choose the right platform and for further assistance, keep us posted on – firstname.lastname@example.org