What are cloud solutions and what's their use?
The term cloud-based solution is a reference to on-demand services, which may be in the format of computer networks, storage, or the resources or applications accessed over the internet through a third-party provider's shared cloud computing infrastructure.
Cloud-based solutions deliver a range of benefits for businesses and end-users. They include additional capacity, functionality, scalability, along with lower maintenance and cost of in-house staff or computer infrastructure. Cloud solutions additionally put businesses in a position to focus on core business tasks, rather than non-core business tasks that become time-consuming.
Finest ways in which cloud solutions help achieve business goals
Cloud solutions yield a winning edge for businesses via cost reduction and higher degrees of elasticity, flexibility, and optimal resource utilization. Let us take a look at some situations wherein cloud computing simplifies achieving business goals.
1. Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) and Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS)
Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) will make the entire infrastructure, hardware, and software available for customers. This brings ease to the development, running, and management of applications. But, the inflexibility, complexity, and cost of creating and maintaining applications on-premises are not involved. It may be possible that an organization chooses to go ahead with PaaS for the same reasons that it chooses to go ahead with IaaS. Herein they will attempt to boost the development speed over a platform ready for use where applications can be deployed as well.
Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) yields fundamental functionalities for making computing, storage, and network resources available on-demand for consumers. They are available on a pay-as-you-go basis over the internet. Herein, the existing infrastructure is used on a pay-per-use scheme. This makes IaaS an ideal option for enterprises looking at saving investment costs for acquiring, managing, and maintaining an IT infrastructure.
2. Hybrid cloud and multi-cloud
As a computing environment, a hybrid cloud connects a third-party public cloud with an enterprise's on-premise private cloud services. This creates a single and flexible infrastructure that will run the business's workloads and applications.
With this unique mix of private and public cloud resources, an organization is granted the luxury of choosing the optimal cloud for all workloads or applications. The workload can be freely moved from one cloud to the other with a change in circumstances.
Business and technical objectives are hence easier to meet, cost-efficiently, and effectively. They yield better outcomes than what can be achieved using only the public cloud or only the private cloud.
With multi-cloud, similarly, things can go a step further still. Herein, two or more clouds offered by different cloud providers can be used. They may be presented in any mix, IaaS, PaaS, or SaaS.
Multicloud gives businesses the liberty to decide that what workload is the best match for what cloud, as per the unique process requirements. Odds of vendor lock-in are hence mitigated.
3. Test and development
One of the finest use cases for using the cloud is the test and development environment. This will involve first securing a budget, and then availing of reasonable manpower, physical assets, and time for setting up the environment.
The next step is installing and configuring the platform. There are cases wherein this extends milestones by enhancing project completion timelines.
But nowadays, cloud computing environments that are readily available and designed to meet your requirements are available. This may involve automated provisioning of virtualized and physical resources.
4. Big data analytics
Cloud computing empowers businesses to use Big Data analytics, for tapping into significant quantities of both, structured and unstructured data. This brings business value.
Nowadays, suppliers and retailers, both use customers’ buying patterns for extracting information. This adds value to their marketing and advertising campaigns when they target their default customer profile. Social media platforms make an important basis for behavioral pattern analytics.
5. Cloud storage
Cloud delivers the odds of storing, accessing, and retrieving files from all web-enabled interfaces. Typically, web interfaces are simple. At all times and places, they yield high security, scalability, speed, and availability for the environment. Herein, an enterprise will only pay for the amount of cloud storage that they consume. Similarly, minimum daily maintenance is required for the storage infrastructure.
An organization further has a choice at storing the data on or off-premises. But this depends on the regulatory compliance requirements as well. It is in virtualized storage pools that a third party hosts that the data is stored. This is based upon customer specification requirements.
6. Disaster recovery
An important advantage of using the cloud is the cost-effectiveness it yields in the event of disaster recovery (DR). Recovery is quicker because it is conducted from a mesh of different physical locations. This is reasonably less expensive as compared to a traditional DR site, which features rigid procedures and fixed assets.
7. Data Backup
Backing up data has traditionally been a time-consuming and complex operation. This involved a set of drives and tapes. They were collected manually and dispatched to a backup facility. A host of problems could occur in this procedure, such as running out of backup media. Loading the backup devices for restoring information was also a time-consuming method prone to human errors.
Cloud-based backup is a significant improvement over the traditionally used backup methods. Data can, herein, be dispatched across any location using the wire. Security is not an issue here, nor is the capacity.
As compared to the traditionally used methods, cloud-based solutions yield additional flexibility to the IT infrastructure. Furthermore, they leverage mobile computing and big data analytics as well. This opens up a range of new possibilities for a business and yields a competitive edge.