2007 saw the beginning of cloud computing revolution. Since then, we have experienced accelerated growth in different branches of the industry and a strong division into three major subsectors: Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), which allows the developers to freely modify all traditional IT resources; Platform as a Service (PaaS), a more advanced version of IaaS, in which the customers can run and develop web apps without the infrastructure needed to maintain them; and Software as a Service (SaaS) in which cloud providers run and manage all services.
The versatility of Cloud has made it the hot topic among the biggest business players and nowadays we rarely see a company which doesn’t already use cloud computing or isn’t planning to move the data soon enough. At the same time, cloud computing has become interesting to startups owners who, lacking both the financial support and manpower of the big players, consider Cloud a great way to grow and expand quickly. Yet with more and more startups using cloud computing and more and more cloud providers catering for their needs, the question arises; which cloud computing platform will benefit my startup the most?
Obviously, that’s the first idea many business owners have, and it is not an erroneous one. For a long time, Google Cloud Platform, IBM SmartCloud and Microsoft Azure have been recognized as leaders in providing cloud-based services. Google Cloud Platform is a PaaS cleverly utilizing a set of modules, such as App Engine for hosting, Cloud Datastore for storage, and Translate API for services, which the clients can assemble and adjust to their needs. Next most popular candidate is IBM SmartCloud, a handy combination of all types of cloud computing platforms for public, private, and hybrid clouds. It is an infrastructure solution aiming to limit up-front expenses and support company’s virtualization. Lastly, we have Microsoft Azure which serves for millions of developers already working on Microsoft’s platforms. Thanks to competitive pricing and attractive free services (Hotmail, SkyDrive and Office 365) it was able to stay on top of the competition and attract both big businesses and startups alike.
The giants of cloud computing have undoubtedly a lot to offer, however smaller, less known Clouds, may prove equally efficient.
On the top of our list we have Scalr Enterprise Cloud Management Platform, a multi-cloud environment which puts strong emphasis on privacy of its clients. This all-in-one solution guarantees lower costs and increased security, together with effective control and convenient management of company’s public and private cloud environments. If deploying easily and safely is your startup’s main goal – try Scalr.
This PaaS was set up in 2007 and over the last 8 years has helped create more than 4 million apps. Client list includes Macy’s, Toyota Motor Europe, Education Africa, DocSend and many others. The Developers at Heroku attend to 5 billion daily requests and continue to provide excellent customer service for both startups and international corporations. Heroku’s user-friendly interface and innovative one-click configuration are designed to help the clients focus on building astonishing apps and forget the daily troubles of running servers and maintaining development.
Services offered by Jenkins CI are like a breath of fresh air in the world of cloud computing. Jenkins is a continuous integration server which regularly merges all developers working copies with a shared mainline to avoid integration problems. As an open source platform, it is under constant, dynamic development. Jenkins has successfully served over 100 000 users and the list of satisfied customers includes Netflix, LinkedIn, CloudBees, Etsy. Last year Jenkins has been granted the SD Times 100 Award for excelling in build automation, continuous integration and continuous delivery.
Unfortunately, when it all comes down to the moment of choosing, there seems to be no one-size-fits-all answer to the question of the best cloud computing services. Paul Korzeniowski rightly points out that despite undeniable advantages of cloud-based environment, there are certain disadvantages and even dangers of choosing such solutions. Cloud platforms are more likely to fall victim to severe outages, which may result in disabling the company for days. Moreover, startups need to be aware of pricing which might, as the company’s needs grow, become too excessive to handle. As a result, with time, certain companies decide to leave cloud computing platforms for in-house IT systems.
Whatever you decide, make sure to conduct a thorough research to find out if a particular cloud will serve in accordance with your line of business.