Cloud technology: The future of IT

Istiaque Ahmed Bhuiyan | Published: February 27, 2019 20:54:07 | Updated: March 03, 2019 21:20:59

Cloud computing was popularised in 2006 by Amazon and Google. But the concept was introduced as early as 1996.

Over the decades, cloud computing has been adopted into 90 per cent of the various technological fields. A 2018 cloud computing study by IDG Communications, InfoWorld's parent company, found that organisations continue to increase their investment and evolve their cloud environments to leverage the technology to drive their business forward.

In recent days, some technological giants are offering cloud services; moreover, hardware giants like IBM, DELL, HP are also offering cloud computing platform.

But what is cloud computing? Wikipedia defines cloud computing as a shared pool of configurable system resources and higher-level services that can be rapidly provisioned with minimal management effort, often over the Internet or the Intranet.

Cloud computing is basically a computing system which actually reduces OPEX and CAPEX investment. Why is it cheap in terms of on premises machine management system? Because there is no need to involve capital investment and operational investment like computer machine along with parts, rent of space, infrastructure decoration, maintenance cost, power consumption, etc.

There are three categories of cloud services: One is 'private cloud' which grows slowly. The second is 'public cloud' which has a fast growth rate, and the final one is 'hybrid cloud.'

Cloud services are: IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service), PaaS (Platform as a Service) and SaaS (Software as a Service).

In IaaS, applications, data, operating system and middle-ware will be managed by the customer. Only virtualisation, networking, storage and server will be managed by cloud providers.

In PaaS, the machine is ready to deploy your desired services; you just input the credentials and enjoy the services. So, application and data are for the customers, all others are for cloud providers.

In SaaS, all resources will be responsible for the cloud service provider, like Cloud ERP, Fusion Applications, Sales ERP, CRM, Financial Applications etc.

These services depend on who are the best in which sections. Amazon is the market leader of cloud service provider; but their SaaS and DbaaS service are not very popular. Amazon also does not have own application solutions right now. Microsoft provides Azure Cloud which has IaaS, SaaS and PaaS services as well; Google offers IaaS and PaaS services; Alibaba, IBM, HP, etc. are now operating cloud in technology market. Big giant Oracle Corporation Inc has come up with Oracle Cloud Technology, which is said to be distinctly different from the rest.

As Oracle has all of its own services like hardware, software, database, web services, enterprise solutions etc, customers can get all the services at the same place without third party involvement. Presently they are introducing from Generation-1 Cloud to Generation -2 Cloud; they have introduced Oracle Cloud Classic (OCI-C) to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI) with more autonomous features.

There are a plethora of usable, flexible factors in cloud computing technology. For example, a person needs a computer on an emergency basis to test some services in Windows or Linux platform, but does not have a PC at that time. Either that person will create a VM instance that will be sharing resources from an existing computer, or he will buy a computer for that small pieces of work. Both are money and time consuming.  If one has a cloud platform, one can fix the situation within five minutes on a computer, for instance on a PC in any platform (windows/linux) with one's desired storage space (in hardware system- storage cannot manage one's desired needs, one has to buy minimum 1TB storage from the market).  If the person needs 20GB space, he/she will choose 20GB. This will allow only 20GB for that period under the pay as you go model. After testing the services, the user can delete this and the bill cycle will allow only the running time of that cloud instance.

In this way, through cloud technology one can take multiple services with very low minimal cost. One can create snapshot of every incident and can easily restore snapshots. One can run enterprise solutions like ERP or any other web services, email servers/services, database services etc. The data will be 99.99 per cent secure under cloud technology.

This is why cloud computing is gradually gaining momentum. Following are the key points discussed at Oracle Open World 2018:

a. By 2025, 80 per cent of production apps will be in the cloud;

b. Two SaaS Suite providers will have 80 per cent market share

c. The number of corporate-owned data centre will decrease by 80 per cent;

d. 80 per cent of IT budget will be spent on cloud services;

e. 80 per cent of IT budgets will be spent on business innovation and only 20 per cent on system maintenance.

f. All the enterprise data will be stored in the cloud.

g. 100 per cent of application development and testing will be conducted in the cloud.

h. Enterprise cloud will be the most secure place for processing of IT.

The world is moving fast with technology. Considering the value of time, business stakeholders always want the best and maximum output from their investment. Technology always plays a vital role at helping these stakeholders understand the real scenario behind the business input/output. To get maximum benefit with minimum investment, business stakeholders will always look for the most profitable option. Cloud is one option that offers multiple solutions helping users get the maximum output with minimal time operations, whereas in a traditional system it is not possible to get most of the output in a short span of time.

Istiaque Ahmed Bhuiyan is a technology specialist.


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