Though Cloud Computing has been around for many years, global adoption reached a frenetic pace only in the last five years. The software industry is quickly transitioning to the new service model due to several benefits offered by Cloud Computing over the traditional licensing model.
Here is a small list of benefits.
Advantages of Cloud Computing
These days it only takes a few clicks to get your cloud infrastructure, thanks to the high level of competition between the top cloud computing providers. You can even get started for free on Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud, and many other cloud service providers.
The CSPs (Cloud Computing Service Providers) have made it as easy as it is possible to get started on the cloud and the lack of upfront expenditure still remains Cloud Computing segment’s biggest selling point.
If you are an entrepreneur who is about to launch a startup, will you spend thousands of dollars to build your own infrastructure or will you prefer to pay only for the resources you consume?
When you move to the cloud, you get direct access to the infrastructure power build by your service provider. Doubling your server capacity will take weeks if not months of planning to execute when you manage your infrastructure, but when you sign up with a third-party cloud service provider, it will only take few clicks to scale up.
What if you want to reduce your infrastructure capacity. In an on-premise setting, the option to scale down is it simply leave the capacity unused, wasting valuable resources, time and money in the process. When you are in the cloud, you can regularly adjust your infrastructure capacity to match your needs. Increase when you think you need additional firepower, decrease it when you don’t need them.
By using cloud computing, you can achieve a lower variable cost than you can get on your own. Because usage from hundreds of thousands of customers are aggregated in the cloud, providers such as Amazon Web Services can achieve higher economies of scale which translates into lower pay as you go prices – AWS
On-site datacenters typically require a lot of “racking and stacking”—hardware set up, software patching and other time-consuming IT management chores. Cloud computing removes the need for many of these tasks, so IT teams can spend time on achieving more important business goals. – Microsoft
But this is not a blanket statement that applies to every type of business and every business case.
The amount of savings that you can get when you migrate to the cloud really depends on the individual requirement; for some the savings might be huge, for some the risks may outweigh the savings and for some, who have already invested a ton of money to build their own infrastructure, a complete migration will not make any sense at all.
Any Time, Anywhere, Any Device:
Mobility is another advantage of cloud computing. Want your employees to work from anywhere, anytime and use any device? Cloud is your best solution.
With detailed security protocols in place, cloud service providers have made it easy to control access and authenticate users, increasing the mobility of your workforce. Not just your employees, even your customers can access their application from anywhere and from any device, as long as you have given them the access.
Automatic Software Updates and Hardware Upgrades:
If there is one thing that remains a constant in the IT world then its change. There was a time when desktops had 512 MB RAM. Today you won’t even buy a mobile phone with that kind of memory.
When you own your own infrastructure you will be stuck with the hardware of yesterday. When you are in the cloud, the job to upgrade the infrastructure falls in your service provider hands. You do not own the server and related infrastructure, you are only renting them. Upgrading the hardware is not your responsibility anymore.
Considering the amount of competition in the Cloud Computing industry, you will never be asked to operate on outdated hardware, ever.
Software as a Service (SAAS):
The global software industry has quickly adopted the as-a-service model to sell software. According to Gartner, software-as-a-Service segment will grow from being a $58.8 billion market in 2017 to a $113.1 billion market in 2021.
SAAS has become the go to model for software companies because it allows continuous evolution of the software with minimal impact on the user. Let me explain.
When companies sell software on an annual licensing model, they need to transfer the file, help the buyer (especially large ones) with installation and have a support team in place to make sure things are running smoothly for the client.
Upgrades will always be complex and if a section of the customer base refuses to upgrade to the new version, then they have the headache of handling clients who are still working on outdated software.
When software is centrally hosted, all these problems are addressed in one go.
Reduced piracy is another advantage SAAS brings to software makers. The company is always aware of who is using it and when they made the last payment.
For users, SAAS reduces the load on their infrastructure, increases savings in most cases, gives them access to software that’s automatically updated, increases mobility and collaboration.
Access to Cutting Edge Tech
Microsoft Azure’s Machine learning service that can be used to build, train and deploy AI Models starts at $0.044/hour.
Amazon Connect, a self-service, contact center technology service, starts at $0.0030 per minute for direct inbound calls and
$0.0120 for Toll-free.
Google Cloud identity that lets you manage users, devices
IBM’s Watson powered Visual Recognition service that lets you tag, classify and search visual content using AI firepower is free to use for 1000 events per month. The standard plan costs $0.002 USD /GeneralTagging and $0.004 USD /FaceRecognition.
These are just a few examples of cutting edge technology that is available as on-demand service.
These services would have been prohibitively expensive for a company to build on their own and will be out of reach for most small to medium sized companies for ever. But the as-a-service model has completely changed that equation, giving everyone an equal opportunity to access latest technologies.