In 2020, public cloud usage spiked as many businesses needed it to stay operational in the midst of the stay-at-home orders put in place in Charlotte, North Carolina. But after more than a year of using a public cloud platform, some companies are evaluating whether they should continue doing so or switch to private or hybrid clouds.
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Are you also wondering whether your business should continue leveraging a public cloud platform? Let's discuss the advantages and disadvantages to help you decide.
What are the advantages of using a public cloud platform?
There are plenty of reasons why many businesses opt for a public cloud platform.
1. Low initial investment
When you subscribe to public cloud platforms, such as Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform, their providers are the ones who shell out for the upfront costs. This spares you from investing in the required applications, hardware, and physical space. Instead, you pay a monthly or annual subscription fee, based on only the resources you use, and sometimes a minor initial setup fee as well.
Moreover, since public cloud platforms have multiple users, you’re able to take advantage of economies of scale, which means costs are spread over a larger number of users — the more users there are, the lower the cost per user. This is why the public cloud is more affordable than private or hybrid clouds.
2. Ease of implementation, management, and maintenance
Top public cloud providers have petabytes of storage and server space readily available, so you can immediately rent the computing resources you need. They are also in charge of managing and maintaining the cloud infrastructure, which means you don’t need to hire IT personnel to do those tasks and focus on more important matters instead.
When you use a public cloud platform, you can expect 24/7 uptime since providers’ data centers are protected with enterprise-grade security and climate control to prevent system failure. Not only that, but these data centers are spread out around the world so that if one goes down, the workload can be distributed to the remaining data centers.
4. Scalability and flexibility
Since you pay for only the computing resources you need, you can easily increase or decrease the resources allocated to you. With just a few clicks, you can scale up your subscription to meet greater demand during peak seasons. You can also easily scale down during lean months.
5. Access to the latest technologies
Using a public cloud platform allows you to leverage state-of-the-art technologies, such as artificial intelligence and Kubernetes, because public cloud providers constantly update their hardware and software to maintain a competitive edge.
What are the disadvantages of using a public cloud platform?
While the public cloud offers plenty of benefits, it also has disadvantages, which is why other businesses choose other cloud computing delivery models instead.
1. Potential security and compliance issues
Since third-party providers own and control public cloud environments, you have little or no control over the security measures they implement. This may be problematic for organizations that are subject to stringent compliance regulations. Healthcare providers, for example, cannot simply upload protected health information in the public cloud since it requires more complex data security and user privacy protections. In contrast, private cloud setups give businesses granular control over how their servers are set up and secured.
2. Lack of customization
Since the public cloud hosts multiple users, it follows a one-size-fit-all approach with standard options. This means you can only customize it to fit your needs up to a certain degree. Therefore, if you require a very complicated network architecture or complex application process, the public cloud may not be a good fit.
Still unsure whether the public cloud best suits your needs? The IT experts of SpectrumWise can provide professional advice and help you with cloud implementation. Schedule your FREE consultation today.