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Cloud computing a new era of virtual infrastructure

Have you ever wondered how your data is stored and processed online? Do you know what is covered by the term "cloud"?

Cloud Computing, is not just an industry term - it is also a true revolution in technology. It is a huge data centre always at hand, ready to be used, without the need to invest in your own server infrastructure or storage. However, as cloud technology continues to evolve, there are also new challenges and threats to the security of your data. Find out what it's all about and see why you should choose Cloud technology!

What is cloud computing?

Cloud computing provides developers and IT departments with the ability to focus on their most important tasks, eliminating the need to purchase, own and maintain physical data centres and servers.

Instead of investing in in-house infrastructure, technology services such as computing power, storage and databases can be accessed on-demand from the provider, in a flexible and cost-effective model for the use of products and services, based on the "pay-as-you-go" principle, in which customers pay only for the use of the necessary resources, avoiding unnecessary activities such as capacity planning or required computing power.

cloud computing

Types of cloud computing services:

With the rise in popularity of cloud computing, several different models and deployment strategies have emerged to help meet specific customer needs. Each type of cloud service and deployment method provides different levels of control, flexibility and management:

  1. Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), is a business model that provides IT infrastructure such as computing resources, storage and network bandwidth. This allows companies the flexibility to use the resources they need without having to invest in their own infrastructure. Examples of companies that use this model include:
    • Netflix - one of the largest streaming platforms in the world, which uses AWS cloud infrastructure to host its services, through services such as Amazon S3, Amazon EC2 and Amazon CloudFront;
    • Pinterest - a community platform that relies primarily on AWS services such as Amazon EC2 for hosting applications and Amazon RDS for database management.
  2. Platform as a Service (PaaS) - provides a development platform and runtime environment through which developers can create, test and deploy applications. An example is Heroku - a platform that enables the deployment and running of applications that can be written in programming languages supported by the platform. So the developer does not have to put up the infrastructure or scale it - everything happens automatically and really their role is just to upload the source code.
  3. Software as a Service (SaaS) - a cloud-based software model that delivers applications to end users via a web browser. SaaS is a very widespread model on the Internet, whereby companies do not need to install software on their servers. A huge number of companies offer their products in this model. To name a few:
    • Google Workspace - ensures high availability, data security and scalability, thanks to the key services that GCP offers, such as Google Cloud Storage, which provides the necessary space to store user data, and Google Cloud Identity for managing user identities and access to services.
    • Salesforce - company provides an advanced CRM that manages customer interactions, supports sales and marketing and significantly improves customer service. The company also owns Slack, a service that improves intra-company communication.
    • Shopify - a platform with which you can build any online shop in a cloud infrastructure. Shopify operates on a subscription model - the customer pays monthly for a given package, while not having to worry about hosting their online shop, keeping it up-to-date and secure. They receive a finished product that they can fully manage without having to worry about the technical aspects.
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What are the advantages of cloud computing?

  1. Flexibility - the cloud allows a choice of operating system, programming language, web application platform, database and other services, giving users complete freedom to tailor the environment to their needs.
  2. Cost-effective - billing models are based on pay-as-you-go resource consumption, which eliminates the need for long-term contracts or immediate costs, allowing users to pay only for the resources they use.
  3. Reliability - you have access to a scalable, reliable and secure global computing infrastructure to ensure continuous service availability. The cloud infrastructure is spread across multiple servers in different regions of the world.
  4. Scalability - companies offer flexible and efficient solutions to dynamically adapt resources to the needs of the application, allowing seamless scaling up or down depending on the workload.
  5. Security - the Cloud environment takes a comprehensive approach to security, encompassing physical, operational and software measures, providing users with peace of mind, in terms of protecting their data and applications.
cloud computing

Challenges of cloud computing

Cloud computing, despite its popularity and numerous benefits, is not without challenges that may require attention and proper management. These challenges include:

Data security

It represents one of the biggest challenges associated with the cloud. Continuous monitoring and the implementation of strict security protocols are needed to ensure the integrity and confidentiality of information.

Cost management

A flexible payment model can make actual costs difficult to predict and control. It is therefore crucial to carry out regular cost analysis and optimise resource consumption to avoid unnecessary expenditure.

Integration and migration

These processes can be complex and time-consuming, especially with large and complex infrastructures. Adequate planning and preparation is required to ensure that the migration process goes smoothly and that disruption to the organisation is minimised.

Cloud versus AI?

Cloud computing and artificial intelligence (AI), are rapidly developing fields that support each other. Today's AI applications require large computational resources, so cloud computing is a key component of their infrastructure. Cloud computing provides scalability, access to a variety of tools, data security and efficient data management. Collaboration between the two enables advanced AI solutions to be created cost-effectively and efficiently. This partnership paves the way for innovative applications that can revolutionise various fields. It also results in a significantly lower entry threshold in the use of ML and AI in target products.

Examples of services providing AI solutions offered by leading cloud platforms such as Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud Platform and Microsoft Azure further confirm this synergistic relationship. Amazon Rekognition, Google Cloud Vision API and Azure Machine Learning are just a few of the many tools available that enable the use of advanced artificial intelligence techniques in applications stored and processed in the cloud.

cloud computing

The future of cloud computing

Cloud computing is facing rapid growth, with spending on public cloud services projected to increase by 20.4% to $678.8 billion in 2024, according to Gartner. The dynamic expansion of cloud computing opens up exciting prospects for the future, which will be shaped by providers who offer comprehensive solutions, taking into account not only technical aspects, but also economics, privacy and sustainability.

What does this mean for companies?

For companies, this means being open to the benefits of cloud computing. The increase in spending on public cloud services is a signal that it is worth considering moving your operations to the cloud in order to be more competitive. Companies that are able to adapt to changing trends and offer comprehensive solutions based on the use of cloud solutions will gain a competitive advantage over companies that are less flexible in this aspect of their infrastructure.

Start working together with cloud technology today!

Cloud computing is not just a technology, but a revolution in the way organisations manage their IT infrastructure. With its flexibility, cost and resource savings and data security, more and more companies are moving their resources to the cloud. However, as with any new technology, there are challenges to overcome. Understanding these issues is key to success in realising the potential of cloud computing in your organisation.

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