What is Cloud Computing: A Beginner Guide
Table of Content
What is Cloud Computing?
In simple terms, cloud computing definition refers to the process of delivering computing services such as servers, networking, storage, databases, analytics, intelligence, and software on the Cloud for flexible resources, faster innovation, and economies of scale. Cloud computing meaning is the provision of services on the internet through a vast network of computers.
With the latest technological advancements, cloud services have evolved as the need of industries of all sizes and geographies. The number of companies shifting to Cloud in both private and public sectors is countless. Some of the popular names in the cloud computing world are Amazon web services, Microsoft Azure, Google cloud platform, IBM Cloud, Oracle, and so on.
History of Cloud Computing
Before the cloud computing meaning, there was client computing or server computing which is mainly centralized storage where all the data was stored. If a single user wants to access the data, he will need to connect to the server first and then attain access to complete the task. After this, distributed computing came into existence. In this, all the computers are networked closely and share resources, if required.
In 1961, John MacCharty suggested selling computing like a utility. However, it was a brilliant idea; however, only for the next decade.
Later in 1999, Salesforce.com started to deliver applications to all users on a simple website.
Whereas in 2002, Amazon came up with Amazon Web Services, which provides services such as storage, computation, and even human intelligence.
How Does Cloud Computing Work?
Cloud computing works through an excellent internet connection by allowing users to download the data on any of the selected devices, including a laptop, computer, or smartphone. It is easier for cloud systems server users to edit the documents while other users are working on the same. This makes the working process flexible and hassle-free.
Benefits of Cloud Computing
The following are the benefits of Cloud Computing –
1. Competitive Advantage
While working on the cloud server, people experience a competitive edge in unexpected areas such as advanced customer relationships, precise business decision-making, enhanced business collaborations, and so on.
2. Improved Collaboration
For any business, collaborating with people or businesses is the ultimate goal. Cloud computing promotes this activity as the data can be viewed easily across a cloud-based platform.
When it comes to switching to cloud computing, the organization regularly worries about security concerns. Cloud holes a full-time job and carefully view data. It means there are no stones left unturned.
4. Excellent Accessibility
Since cloud computing is easily available on Laptops, computers, or mobile phones, it offers excellent accessibility.
Cloud computing promotes fault tolerance in your infrastructure. Extra resources can be added easily for redundancy.
6. Automatic Software Integration
Through end-to-end cloud computing services, organizations can easily customize software applications that allow businesses to handpick services that perfectly suit their requirements.
Types of Cloud Computing You Should Know About
There are four major types of cloud computing. These include –
1. Public Cloud
A public cloud is responsible for delivering resources on the internet. Unlike the private Cloud, the public cloud is owned and managed by a third-party cloud service provider.
2. Private Cloud
A private cloud is the deployment of the cloud computing resources for use by only one organization. In the case of a private cloud, organizations take care of the cost management of the private Cloud.
3. Hybrid Cloud
A mix of private and public Cloud is called the Hybrid Cloud.
It is referred to when the company relies on multiple cloud computing services to improve the overall cloud infrastructure capabilities.
Type of Cloud Computing Services
1. SaaS (Software-as-a-Service)
In SaaS, also called software as a service, the cloud computing and service provider ensures secure and robust network connections. You won’t have to worry about installation or data storage. Here, the software application services are hosted and delivered by cloud computing service providers.
2. PaaS (Platform-as-a-Service)
PaaS, also called a Platform as a service, majorly deals with providing a platform to develop, test, deliver, and manage software, including servers, storage, network, and databases. Platforms as a service provider extend a high-quality read-for-use environment for development, assuring limited time and cost wastage and high backup benefits.
3. IaaS (Infrastructure-as-a-Service)
The maintenance, provisioning, and ownership of servers, operating systems, storage, networks, virtual machines (VMs), and others for helping organizations to build their operating systems and data storage, and network infrastructure.
Examples of Cloud Computing
Here are some of the cloud computing examples. Let’s have a look –
- Infrastructure-as-a-service – IaaS – DigitalOcean
- Software-as-a-service – SaaS – Salesforce
- File sharing + Data storage – Dropbox
- Platform-as-a-service – Paas – AWS
- Big data analytics – Civis Analytics
- Cybersecurity – Forcepoint
- Data Governance – Carbonite
The Future of Cloud Computing
Today, everything can be connected digitally because of cloud computing. It opens up a whole new world of opportunities, applications, jobs, services, and whatnot. It imbibes many features, which makes it future-ready. Although we cannot tell the future; however, predicting it is possible. Here are some of the future trends of cloud computing which will make it stay forever.
- IoT and Cloud computing will come together
- Increase in the storage capacity
- Enhance internet performance
- Prioritizing modular software
- Improvement in the cloud services
- Better safety and security
- More economic
- Less downtime
- Adequate support
Is Cloud Computing Secure?
Like cyber security and other areas of IT, Cloud computing is a major area that offers ample opportunities to the organization as this technology is packed with the best security standards. However, storing data on someone else’s device always opens up risks. Although, a well-designed and managed cloud security strategy hugely reduces the chances of cyberattacks.
A Quick Comparison Between Cloud Computing and Traditional Model
When talking about cloud-based solutions, you can start your work immediately, which means there is absolutely no deployment time. On the other hand, in the traditional model, one needs software, hardware, the right configuration, and a considerable amount of IT skills to get started, which generally takes more than a month to get started.
Cloud software is easily and readily accessible from any part of the world as each of you will own unique log-in details. In the case of the traditional or on-premise software, they can be installed only on the user’s computer.
Pricing is another major factor that users generally overview while making a choice. The Cloud model allows you to pay only for the tools and technology you are using. Since there are several cloud service providers who offer free trials to attract clients, you can have one-on-one interaction with the SaaS software and see how well it performs for your business. When talking about the traditional software, the user has to pay the entire amount beforehand.
When talking about cloud computing, there is no need to invest in physical server space, which reduces the expenditure of the related companies and startups. However, the traditional model is quite expensive. As all users need to have a specific software license. Also, you will have to wait for a month for the newest updates and features.
5. Maintenance Cost
In the cloud computing environment, there is no need to invest in physical server space, which reduces the expenditure of SaaS startups and SaaS companies. These companies offer distributed and free regular updates, allowing you to make updates anytime, anywhere. When talking about the traditional models, customers had to spend a large amount of money purchasing hardware resources. This is not only expensive but time-consuming at the same time.
Big Giants in Cloud Computing Industries
Here is the list of the biggest giants in the cloud computing industry –
Market Share (%)
Market Share (%)
Cloud computing has drastically changed the business world in the last few decades. Cloud and artificial intelligence technology have combined seamlessly that today it has become the necessity of life. Although the rumors about the security and cost of the cloud still prevail. However, there are some big giants too that are offering unmatched services and helping to solve the evolving issues. As a result, it becomes a win-win situation for the user.