Cloud computing has become commonplace throughout the tech industry. We are moving away from local servers and beginning to rely more heavily on the cloud. This transition isn’t surprising. The advantages of cloud computing enable a more effective and efficient workflow. However, just like anything else, cloud computing has it disadvantages.

Advantages of Cloud Computing

No Physical Infrastructure

One of the greatest benefits of cloud computing comes from leveraging services that already exist in the cloud. If a service you need has already been written, it’s probably cheaper to use that than to write your own version. Using a cloud service provider reduces the need to write intricate and sophisticated software for your software system. The cloud service provider maintains and tests the service and you just need to call the API.

Dedicated servers are large, expensive, and difficult to maintain. Cloud servers enable you to optimize IT performance without the huge costs associated with purchasing and managing fully dedicated infrastructure.

cloud computing control

Cloud servers can be configured to provide levels of performance, security, and control similar to those of a dedicated server. Your data just won’t be hosted in hardware that is solely owned by you. It will reside in a virtual environment that is managed by the cloud hosting provider.

Automatic Scaling

If you decide to use on-premises infrastructure, you will need to analyze your existing workload and plan for the future. Traditional servers are expensive to upgrade and you may end up paying for server space that you don’t even use. You want to ensure you have enough storage space and computing power for your existing work, but not too much that you end up paying for unused services.

The nature of cloud technology solutions opens the door to additional advantages of cloud computing. It makes it scalable and it’s done automatically. Cloud service providers let you scale up and down seamlessly. This ensures that you are paying only for what you use.

cloud computing access

Less Operational Issues

Cloud computing providers provide flexibility in cloud capacity, disaster recovery solutions, and enhanced security measures. They ensure that your data is always accessible and that upgrades are installed automatically. It’s usually a whole lot more reliable than maintaining your own servers. You can let the cloud provider take care of maintaining the system while you focus on growing your business.

The advantages of cloud computing are enticing, but it’s important to understand your business needs and how the cloud may influence your operations. Before you jump to a conclusion, let’s look at some of the disadvantages.

Disadvantages of Cloud Computing

Vendor Lock-in

Although cloud providers promise that cloud services will be flexible to use and easy to integrate, businesses may find it challenging to switch from one cloud hosting provider to another.

Profound differences between vendor systems makes it complex and expensive to reconfigure your applications. The migration may also expose your data to additional security and privacy vulnerabilities.

Some companies even make extracting your data from the cloud an arduous process when the service is cancelled. Properly understanding what services and capabilities the vendor is providing will help avoid getting locked-in.

Price

The cloud is more convenient, and you need to pay for that convenience. Many will suggest that cloud is by far the most cost-effective solution, but it all depends on the configuration. If your business is operating a long-term, stable workload you may be better off with an on-premises, private cloud deployment.

Understanding your current workloads versus how the workload will grow will heavily influence your costs. You want to take advantage of the cloud’s economies of scale, but you don’t want to pay for unused resources.

cloud computing cost

It may be worthwhile to experiment with a variety of offerings before choosing a service. Some tools like the Amazon AWS and Google GCP cost calculators will help you make more informed decisions.

Limited Control

When signing up for cloud computing services you relinquish some degree of control. The majority of cloud management is completed by the service provider. As the customer, you cannot control any parts of the backend infrastructure, such as server shell access, updating and firmware management.

If control/ownership is the most important factor regarding your stored data, a public cloud may not be right for your company. Decreased control is a common drawback for companies considering the switch to the cloud.

Another controversial topic regarding the advantages of cloud computing is security.

Cloud Security

Any discussion involving sensitive data must address security and privacy concerns. Fortunately, cloud service providers know that, too. That’s why cloud security has drastically improved over the past several years.  

Cloud companies are investing in the foremost security tools and they are performing more routine security audits. Cloud services operate by the strictest standards in data protection, standards that very few on-premises companies can compete with.

cloud computing security

When signing up for any cloud service, whether an Infrastructure, Platform, or Software as a Service (IaaS, PaaS, SaaS), do some research to make sure that the cloud business you’re entrusting uses the highest security standards.

Cloud Computing Trends in 2018

Based on its growth rate, it’s apparent that the benefits of cloud computing outweigh the disadvantages. The cloud application market will grow rapidly to $236 billion in 2020, the total being 17% higher than the 2014 projection. — Forrester

This growth will be driven by a stronger market for cloud applications like software-as-a-service (SaaS) and an increased demand for cloud platforms like infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) and platform-as-a-service (PaaS).

  • Bain & Company predicts that SaaS will grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 18% by 2020.
  • According to KPMG, PaaS adoption is predicted to be the fastest-growing sector of cloud platforms – growing from 32% in 2017 to 56% adoption in 2020.
  • According to Statista, IaaS will have a market that is predicted to reach $17.5B worldwide by 2018.
  • Cloud to Cloud Connectivity: cloud providers are opening up API’s on Platforms for connecting multiple solutions.
  • As more IoT connected devices come to market, cloud usage will continue to increase.

cloud computing accessibility

As cloud adoption continues to increase, the range of services, security, and performance of cloud systems will respond in-kind. At Seamgen we have created hundreds of solutions for our clients across all 3 of the major platforms, and on each platform, we integrate the right products for the solutions you need. We can help you transform your existing systems, create modern backend solutions, and help with the ongoing management of your new cloud platform.

Thanks for reading!

If you’d like to learn more about tech and the latest trends, check out our other posts. To inquire about any custom application design or development, please contact us.