We are now in the age of cloud computing — businesses of all sizes, locations, and industries are turning to cloud services to complete their digital transformation. The COVID pandemic imposed has turned the world upside down, with businesses worldwide going through survival challenges. Cloud technology is helping businesses reopen, reinvent and weather the ongoing uncertainty. Simply put, upgrading to cloud-based or Internet-based platforms is the best way to ensure your business stays up to date and ahead of the competition.
According to the 2021 trend of cloud computing results, more and more enterprises are embracing cloud-based platforms due to higher-than-expected cloud usage throughout 2020.
Not sure why you should move from the traditional way of computing? This guide is here to help. We’ve compiled everything you need to know about Cloud-based platforms – what is cloud computing, why cloud computing is important, and the benefits of cloud computing.
What is a Cloud-Based Platform?
Cloud computing is the technique of utilizing computer-related services over the internet. It allows businesses to rent access to computing services like servers, storage, databases, analytics, networking, software, and intelligence over the Internet.
A cloud platform refers to the hardware and operating system of a server in an Internet-based data center. The platform enables software and hardware products to co-exist remotely.
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Why Cloud computing is important?
This allows companies to avoid setting up and owning data centers and computing infrastructure. They can also save big on the money used for developing and installing software to improve their operations. The Companies simply pay for the cloud services they use. This helps reduce operational costs and businesses can run more efficiently.
Cloud computing allows several users to view data in real-time and share projects at any time and from any location. This technology is a safe way of storing and sharing data.
Most companies are using cloud-based software to make their work easier and faster. According to the Flexera 2021 State of the Cloud Report, 92% of businesses have a multi-cloud strategy while 82 % use a hybrid cloud strategy.
Most of us are relying on cloud computing already while doing daily activities like updating a Facebook status, checking bank balance on mobile phone, sending emails while on the move, or using multiple apps to manage workload.
Why do organizations prefer cloud-based platforms? Cloud enables large-scale businesses to operate at lower cost while improving efficiency and offer a host of other benefits. Check out some of the top benefits below.
Benefits of Cloud-Based Platforms
1. Reduced Costs
It is expensive to establish and run a data center. There are several costs involved, from purchasing and maintaining equipment to hiring trained technicians who can install and manage the center. By upgrading to cloud infrastructure, you will only pay for the services that you procure. That drastically reduces a lot of cost investments towards hardware, facilities, and utilities to grow your business. You can even do away with large IT teams to manage your operations as you can benefit from the cloud provider’s expertise. Cloud system also reduces downtime costs as there’s hardly any downtime in the cloud.
“Providers charge cloud computing services based on components like storage, the number of users, time, memory space, etc. You can curtail costs by choosing the package that best suits your budget and requirements.” – in a recent interview as elaborated by Daniel Danilatos, the Founder & CEO of Neara.
One of the major benefits of cloud-based platforms is mobility or flexibility. The service allows mobile access to corporate data through smartphones and other devices. This ensures you and your staff can work from any location to complete tasks and stay updated with clients and co-workers. Everyone stays in the loop.
Cloud computing allows you to store, retrieve, recover or process resources in the cloud with just a few clicks. All you need is a fast internet connection, and you can get real-time updates of all operations, 24X7 on-the-go access to all resources from any device of your choice, in any corner of the world. Sounds too good, huh? But true.
IT needs to vary across companies – a big business won’t have the same requirements as a start-up. Thankfully, the cloud enables companies to immediately scale up or down their IT features as per business needs. Hence, the system is ideal for businesses with varying bandwidth requirements.
In traditional on-premise computing systems, businesses used to plan for unexpected growth by buying additional servers, storage, and licenses, and it would actually take years before those resources were used. With cloud computing, you can get additional features as and when you need them without having to invest in physical infrastructure.
4. Disaster Recovery
In a traditional computing system, backup plans are necessary for data storage. There can be permanent data loss in case of a disaster if there’s no backup plan in place. In cloud systems, previous versions of the software are stored in the cloud and can be easily recovered with minimal damage in case of a disaster. There’s no need for a backup plan.
5. Data Security
Data security is a major concern of every business. With the ever-increasing incidence of data breaches and cybercrimes, it becomes extremely important for companies to ensure data is securely stored and handled. Cloud offers many advanced data security features to guarantee that. Storing data on the cloud is often safer compared to storing it on physical servers and data centers.
Cloud computing offers features like granular permission and access management, which can restrict who can access sensitive data. This reduces the chance of security breaches. There are further security measures that enterprises can take to bolster cloud data protection and limit access to sensitive resources on the cloud. Hence, you are assured of data security.
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6. Wide Range of Options
There are several types, models, and services of cloud platforms available to meet the varying needs of businesses across industries. The major categories of cloud computing services are Platform as a Service (PaaS), Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), and Software as a Service (SaaS). Plus, there are platforms like Public Cloud, Private Cloud, and Hybrid Cloud. The options vary across providers. So, if you need a particular service, you’ll have hundreds of options from different providers. You can select the option that offers the best features and rates for the service that you need.
7. Unlimited Storage Capacity
The cloud has unlimited storage capacity for data of any type in various cloud data storage types. The cost of storage depends upon the level of availability of data, its performance, and the frequency it needs to be accessed.
8. High Speed of Deployment
New cloud computing instances can be created in no time – an advantage that revolutionized the agility and speed of software deployment. This allows developers to test new ideas and design application architecture without the burden of on-site hardware limitations or slow speed of procurement.
9. Automatic Software Updates and Integration
One of the benefits of the SaaS cloud service model is that it makes sure that software vendors manage regular software and security updates on behalf of the users. Thus, as a business owner or manager, you do not need to worry about routine software maintenance practices, and can instead focus on core business issues.
It is easy to test and deploy new software versions in cloud-based platforms.
Cloud environments also integrate with regular DevOps tools and logging systems, making it easier to supervise and detect production issues.
10. Improved Collaboration
As a business owner, you’ll look for ways to boost individual and team performance. Cloud environments allow improved collaboration across teams, thereby boosting team performance. Developers, Quality Analysts, Product Architects, Operations, and Security Experts can easily share real-time data and collaborate without stepping on each other’s toes.
Cloud roles and permissions enable enhanced visibility and monitoring of each worker’s work so that the chances of conflicts and confusion are eliminated. Besides, cloud computing eliminates redundant tasks like data entry.
Also, there’s scope to build different cloud environments for different purposes like staging, QA, pre-production, etc. This allows easy and transparent collaboration among teams, which in turn can improve efficiency and increase productivity.
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It doesn’t take long to see why more and more companies from IT companies to E-commerce companies to government organizations – are scrambling to adopt cloud computing. Businesses worldwide are recognizing how cloud technology improves their production, collaboration, security, and revenue.
All you need is just an internet browser and a device with a fast internet connection. Upgrade your business to cloud computing to prevent a lot of problems that come with traditional on-premises computing. Consider upgrading the operations gradually, to avoid data losses or manipulation during the upgrade. It’s important that you choose a trusted service provider to enjoy the cloud computing benefits outlined above.