28 July 2019

Cloud Providers

Most of Azure cloud service offerings are basically drop-in replacements for their biased standalone software tools. For Microsoft, it seems like Azure is an alternative way of vendor lock-in of the customer via the re-purposed cloud option which has so far proven to be useful through heavy gimmicky marketing. GCP, on the other hand, provides many alternatives for big data but with very ineffective pricing, lacking business critical reliability, security constraints, lots of options to re-invent the wheel with vendor lock-in, still limited in SQL use cases, and their limited over all services. AWS has proven to be a very effective pricing model as well as catering to a wide range of services to cover business needs including a strong reliability and flexible options for management of services. For most organizations, especially for data science work, AWS is the go to cloud solution. Azure and GCP still lag behind considerably in reliability, cloud service offerings, ineffective pricing, and the biggest concern being vendor lock-in. In many cases, cloud providers are limited by their mission statements of what they are trying to achieve through their solutions to businesses and their future progressive infrastructure development goals. For Microsoft, windows is the ultimate success story which one can see has evolved in parallel from Apple. But, linux has become the defacto operating system for the cloud and for obvious reasons. Data as a commodity is a valuable asset to most organizations. And, the management of risk in security and compliance is an enduring struggle for many organizations. Especially, in meeting GDPR compliance many organizations will want a transparent data lineage. Can one trust storage and processing of data on GCP? All Google services converge to some degree or another and get indexed by their search engine. Invariably, the cost and risk of using the third-party cloud infrastructure vs in-house infrastructure will always be a concern for companies to weigh out. It seems, in the long-run, organizations will take back control of their own data storage and processing needs. The peddles of trends are towards portable, smarter, and stackable private cloud ownerships, more flexibility in management of infrastructure, and with virtualization modes at an affordable cost. While start-ups may find it easier with reducing setup costs by leveraging third-party infrastructure. As companies grow with their market value of their products, they may increase their independence by eventually moving away from the third-party cloud dependency to their own in-house converged infrastructure allowing for greater flexibility to meet consumer expectations and the demands of their product services - enterprise enablement drives creative and profitable growth.