Cloud computing can help businesses reap huge benefits out of it. However, with the many advantages, there are few drawbacks to it as well. Take some time and understand the various advantages and disadvantages that cloud computing carries and make the most out of your business technology, no matter which cloud provider you choose.
Advantages of Cloud Computing
One of the most significant cloud computing benefits is in terms of IT cost savings. Businesses, no matter what their type or size exists to earn money while keeping capital and operational expenses to the minimum. With the help of cloud computing, you can save substantial capital costs with little or zero in-house server storage and application requirements as well. Lack of on-premises infrastructure also removes their associated operational costs in the form of power, air conditioning, and administration costs. You only pay for your usage and can disengage whenever you like- without any invested IT capital to worry about. It is believed that only large businesses can afford to use the cloud. However, the fact is that cloud services are extremely affordable for smaller businesses.
Cloud computing with the help of a managed service platform is known to be the most reliable and consistent in-house IT infrastructure. Most service providers offer a Service Level Agreement that guarantees 24/7/365 and 99.99% availability. This helps organizations to take benefit from a massive pool of redundant IT resources as well as quick failover mechanism- even if one server fails, hosted applications and services can easily be transited to any servers that are available.
Cloud computing provides you enhanced and simplified IT management and maintenance capabilities through central administration of resources- vendor managed infrastructure SLA backed agreements. With Cloud computing, IT infrastructure updates and maintenance issues are eliminated as the service providers maintain it. You enjoy a web-based user interface for accessing software, services and applications without the need for installation. Above all of this, an SLA helps ensures a timely and guaranteed delivery, management and maintenance of your IT services.
The ever-increasing computing resources give you a competitive edge over competitors, as the time that you require for IT procurement is virtually zero. Your company can deploy mission-critical applications which deliver significant business benefits, without any upfront costs and minimum provisioning time. Cloud computing helps you forget about the technology and helps you focus on your key business activities and objectives. It can help you cut down the time needed for marketing newer applications and services.
Disadvantages of Cloud Computing
Cloud service providers take care of many clients each day, they tend to become overwhelmed and can even face technical outages. This might lead your business processes to become temporarily suspended. In addition to this, if your internet connection is offline, you will still not be able to access any of your applications or data from the cloud. That is some trouble!
Though cloud service providers have the best of security standards and industry certificate, storing data and important files on external service providers always has some amount of risk in it. Using cloud-powered technologies means that you need to provide your service provider with access to some important and critical business data. While being on a public service opens up cloud service providers to give security challenges on a regular basis. The ease of the procurement and accessibility of cloud services can give nefarious users an ability to scan, identify and exploit various loopholes and vulnerabilities within the system. For example, a multi-tenant cloud architecture where various users are hosted on the same server, a hacker can easily try to break into the data of other users that are hosted or stored on the same server as theirs. Though such exploits and loopholes are not likely to surface, the likelihood of such a compromise is also not a great idea.
Although cloud service providers promise that cloud will be very flexible to use and integrate, the switching of cloud services isn’t something that has evolved completely yet. Organizations might find it difficult to migrate their services from one vendor to the other easily. Hosting and integrating current cloud applications on some other platform may throw up interoperability and support issues. For example, applications that are developed on Microsoft Development Framework (.Net) might not be able to work properly on the Linux platform.
The cloud infrastructure is entirely owned and managed by your service provider, it transfers minimal control to the customer. The customer can only control and manage applications, data, and services operated on top of that, not the backend infrastructure at all. The key administrative tasks such as server shell access, updating and firmware management cannot be passed to the customer or the end-user at all.
It seems incredibly easy to see how advantages of cloud computing can easily outweigh its drawbacks. With benefits like decreased costs, reduced downtime and fewer management efforts that speak for themselves, there is no doubt that cloud computing can be extremely beneficial for us.