What is Cloud Computing?
Cloud computing is the latest way to deliver computing services to a large number of consumers around the world. Users are able to access a wide range of servers and distributed computing applications, in datacenters around the world, hosting thousands of servers and covering any computing need imaginable.
Through cloud computing, an user has access to services like: Custom cloud servers, cloud storage, cloud SQL databases, cloud networking services including CDN services and VPN, dedicated servers, cloud VPS servers, web application firewalls and more. Furthermore, they also get access to cloud analytics, business intelligence, artificial intelligence etc.
Key Advantages of cloud computing
First off, it's really cheap to run. In the old days, you had to purchase expensive servers and network connections in order to be able to provide a business service of some sort. Not anymore – cloud computing services are here for much less. You can pay per use, per month and/or even per hour, and flexible resources keep costs low while having at your disposal, the needed resources and high availability when the requests increase, such as during the busiest days over the year.
Furthermore, cloud computing is highly flexible. You can add, delete, change cloud servers and services as you like, and even on-the-fly via cloud API interfaces. It's entirely up to you.
Then, there is simplicity, and lack of hassle. You don't need high-power connections to power your server and special cooling systems = the datacenters do everything for you. You ca simply enroll and focus on your work, rather having to deal with the additional hassle of installing and maintaining an array of dedicated servers.
Speed - Datacenters have large bandwidth connections, ready to cope with bursts of on-demand computing services as required by your applications, in just a few clicks OR automatically via pre-programmed software. Again you don't need to pay for the extra load all the time, but just when you actually need it; and the extra computing power can be deployed really fast, in just minutes or even mere seconds.
Global distribution - You can serve clients all across the world, through cloud datacenters in various countries, ready to help with the needed bandwidth and fast local ping response. Getting your application to a global stage hasn't ever been easier – you just pick your needed server locations and you're ready to go.
Reliability - Low reliability can severely impact a business. To cope with this, in the old days you had to purchase additional servers and install more connections in a redundant fashion. Cloud servers take this need off your back, and not only that, but it is far cheaper and much more reliable than having to maintain this network on your own. Cloud computing providers have teams of engineers working 24/7 to maintain the availability of services including servers, power and network connections, taking off this hassle and cost from you.
High productivity - No more need to manually install hardware, software, connections and other such tedious tasks. Images and applications are ready to be installed at a single click, or via cloud API or scripts. Due to this fact, your team will be able to focus on their work and most important tasks rather than having to deal with unneeded tasks.
Security - Cloud providers offer security by default in many key areas. For example, many offer denial-of-service protection for your servers or applications. While this usually comes at a cost, it is something most companies will not be able to purchase separately on their own, due to the very high cost. Furthermore, cloud provider engineers are monitoring connections and servers 24/7 for any security issues, so you don't need to have your 24/7 engineering team to take care of your servers.
That's a large number of advantages, no wonder cloud computing has taken over the world. And in the years to come, as things evolve, we expect to see much more in this field.