The cloud computing market continually grows year after year with companies becoming more aware of its endless benefits. It has become the most perfect and convenient way for businesses to extend their infrastructure or in launching new innovations.
To simply put it, cloud computing is the delivery of computing services. With it, users can access files and applications from any device that can access the internet.
Cloud Computing Versus Traditional Web Hosting
Unlike the conventional way wherein the data is stored on your computer’s local hard drive, this is unnecessary for cloud computing. Data in the cloud are stored on virtual servers by a third-party service provider.
There are some distinct characteristics that differentiate a cloud service from conventional web hosting:
- Self Service
End users can easily manage computing resources without needing help from an IT administrator.
Businesses using cloud service can easily scale up or scale down computing resources depending on their demands. This reduces the cost that may be incurred for massive investments in local infrastructure.
Using cloud service allows users to pay only for the resources they need or have used.
Top Benefits of Cloud Computing
Cloud computing is a big lift from the conventional way most users and businesses perceive IT resources. With its increasing demand and popularity, it continually attracts more users and businesses. Here are some more of its attractive benefits:
Since data can be stored on many physical or virtual servers, it helps businesses reduce their expenses of buying IT infrastructures. Additionally, businesses no longer have to hire IT experts and form large teams to handle cloud data operations.
Storing data information in the cloud means users can access it anywhere and whenever they want. As long as they have the device that can access the internet and a decent internet connection. No longer the days for users carrying around massive external hard drives or multiple CDs just to access their data.
With cloud computing services, computing resources can be provisioned after just a few clicks. This gives businesses a lot more flexibility and efficiency in their operations.
All organizations especially large firms and businesses worry about data loss. Storing data in the cloud ensures reliable data backup and disaster recovery capacity. With this, businesses can easily recover their data in the event of emergencies such as natural disasters and power outages.
Another thing that most businesses worry about is ensuring that all their data is safe in its place. Cloud providers offer a broad set of rules, technologies, and controls to intensify security and protect all your data from possible threats.
Types of Cloud Computing
Not all clouds are made the same and suitable for everyone. Each user has their own varying needs, thus, there are several types of models and services to cater to each demand.
- Public Cloud
Public clouds are owned and managed by a third-party service provider. These third-party service providers deliver cloud service and resources over the internet. Public cloud services are usually sold on demand and customers only pay for the resources they need. Examples of these include Amazon Web Services, IBM, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud Platform, and other more.
- Private Cloud
This type of cloud model is exclusively used by a single business entity or user. It can be physically located on the company’s on-site data center. With a private cloud, businesses can manage and build their own cloud infrastructure. This model offers flexibility, full control, and convenience to its users.
- Hybrid Cloud
This is a combination of both public and private cloud models. Bound together by technology, this type of model allows data and applications to be shared by both public and private clouds. With this, it provides businesses greater boosts in flexibility, more deployment options, and optimises your existing infrastructure.
Types of Cloud Services
The array of available cloud computing services is vast, but most fall into four broad categories. Knowing and understanding each service makes it easier for you to identify which one you will need to achieve your business goals.
- Infrastructure as a service (IaaS)
This is the most basic type of cloud computing service. As a user, you can rent IT infrastructures such as servers or Virtual Machines (VMs), storage capacity, networks, operating systems, and other more. With IaaS, service providers offer computing resources on a pay-per-use basis.
- Platform as a service (PaaS)
This type of cloud computing service is specifically designed for developers who can use shared tools, processes, and APIs to accelerate the development, testing, and deployment of software applications. From the business’ perspective, PaaS can ensure that developers are ready to access resources and follow certain processes for a specific array of services.
- Software as a service (SaaS)
This type of cloud computing delivers applications over the internet usually through a web browser on their phone, tablet, or computer. Typically, SaaS applications offer extensive configuration choices for users to code their own modifications and additions.
- Functions as a service (FaaS)
FaaS or serverless computing is an overlapping abstraction with PaaS. It mainly focuses on building application functionality without managing the servers and infrastructure. This cloud version is highly scalable and event-driven. It only uses resources when a certain function or trigger occurs.
Uses of Cloud Computing
If you are unaware of what cloud computing is, then you must be among those ninety-five per cent people today who are using it. You just don’t realize you are actually using cloud services such as online banking, social networks, and others. Cloud computing is making everything possible behind the scenes.
Here are some more examples of the uses of cloud computing and possible cloud services you can enjoy from cloud providers:
- Create cloud-native applications
- Store, back-up, and recover data
- Stream audio and video files
- Deliver software on demand
- Test and build applications
- Analyse data
- Embed intelligent models to provide valuable insights from data captured
Is Cloud Computing For You?
Cloud computing, whether public or private, has become the platform of choice for most businesses today. Understanding the benefits of cloud computing, its different models and its uses will greatly help you come up with the right decision for your business. It may not work for everyone, but cloud computing surely serves a purpose.
Aileen Artiaga is a part-time writer, SMO specialist, and travel enthusiast. She is a curating content, analyzing posts performance, and delivering information to content marketing portals. She also manages her own YouTube channel.