88% of enterprises are now using public clouds for their IT needs.
Many of you are aware of the necessity to move your business to the cloud, but you might be unsure about what the next steps are. What does a transition to the cloud look like and what companies offer cloud computing services? What does such a transition even require? First, let’s start with a definition of cloud computing: it’s the on-demand delivery of IT resources and applications via the internet with pay-as-you-go pricing.
There are many different cloud computing providers to choose from. The cloud computing market is currently in a hyper innovation phase which means companies and technologies are changing and growing very rapidly. The transition to the cloud starts with gaining a basic understanding of the different companies who offer cloud computing. I can work with any of these providers, so the choice is up to you.
In one of my previous posts, I talked about the cloud and how it functions. In this post, I’ll explore some aspects of cloud computing that many people may not be familiar with. Cloud computing consists of three basic service models: Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS) and Software as a Service (SaaS). There are many more components of cloud computing, but these give you an indication of the three main services. Go here if you’d like more detailed information on cloud computing.
Here’s a basic overview of the four main players in the cloud computing market. There are many more besides these, but if you’re a beginner, these are good places to start.
Each company has a slightly different listing of features on its website. Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure are the biggest players in the current market. Choosing the one that’s right for you starts with understanding what your computing needs are for your business.
In 2003, Chris Pinkham and Benjamin Black presented a paper describing a vision for Amazon’s retail operations to be in the cloud. They also mentioned selling virtual servers as a service and Jeff Bezos loved the idea. Amazon cloud computing officially launched in 2006. It’s considered a leader in the IaaS field. AWS is better known as “too big to ignore.” Amazon is currently the largest cloud computing company on the market. Notable clients: Pinterest, Netflix, The CIA.
Google Cloud Storage launched in 2010. Google Cloud Platform Partner Program launched in 2012. One thing that sets Google Cloud apart from the others is the network that connects the company’s data centers. This allows questions to be answered in milliseconds. Google Cloud is based on the network that Google already built for itself. It just opened it up to others with its Partner Program. Notable clients: Spotify, Coca-Cola, Khan Academy.
In 2007, IBM began working on a strategy for cloud computing and partnered with Google to teach cloud computing at universities. Right now, IBM is looking to leverage its unique offering of hardware, software and business services. In a sense, IBM is creating an app store for the cloud at enterprise scale. Even though it is smaller than Amazon, it’s highly profitable and growing at a very fast pace. Notable clients: Github, Comic-Con, Wimbledon
It was released in 2010 as Windows Azure, before being renamed to Microsoft Azure in 2014. It’s considered a leader in the IaaS field. Windows Azure is a great competitor in the cloud application hosting arena, and it’s perfect if you’re hosting a .NET application. 85% of Fortune 500 companies use Microsoft Azure. Notable clients: BMW, Heineken, Xerox.
I only touched upon some basic info about cloud computing companies that are currently leading the pack but hopefully, you’ve gained some knowledge. Cloud computing is here to stay and there’s no better time than the present to familiarize yourself with the current trends in this dynamic field. I have a lot of experience with cloud computing and would be happy to share my insights with you. My name is Dan Prince and I’m the founder of illumisoft. You can reach me via email at [email protected] or my cell phone at 816.564.9595. Feel free to reach out and ask me any questions you may have about cloud computing or anything else.