As businesses expand their use of cloud-based services, a hybrid cloud approach to developing the network infrastructures they need is fast becoming the norm. What is the hybrid cloud, and what impact is this approach to cloud services having on CIOs, CTOs and their enterprises?
For enterprises, the cloud has delivered a raft of services enabling them to expand their product development, reduce costs, innovate and embrace IaaS (Infrastructure-as-a-Service) right across their businesses. However, CIOs understanding that a wholesale move to the public cloud would not enable them to build the flexible and secure networks they need, have been rapidly developing a hybrid approach to the cloud to deliver a range of services they can use to create bespoke networks – this is the hybrid cloud.
The leading cloud vendors have offered their solutions for several years. As enterprises move increasingly to hybrid cloud models to support their service and product evolution, the cloud vendors are moving to support this trend. Amazon AWS will deliver its Outposts services, which will enable businesses to run AWS with their on-premises infrastructures to create private AWS installations at any location.
Outposts comes of course after Microsoft’s Azure Stack which offers a similar experience to AWS. CTOs can now build a precise hybrid cloud environment with familiar tools. Also, if AWS is chosen, CIOs can even buy the same hardware Amazon uses for its datacentres.
CIOs have been under pressure to develop their cloud strategies often within highly regulated environments where a complete move to the public cloud isn’t possible. Here, the hybrid cloud is the perfect solution for them. Indeed, according to research from Cogeco Peer 1, over 92% of those surveyed have on-premises servers, with 66% stating they intend to make further investments in cloud services. Indeed, Gartner predicts a considerable shift to the hybrid cloud, with 90% of businesses moving to this kind of infrastructure by 2020.
Speaking at the recent Gartner Symposium/ITxpo in Dubai, Santhosh Rao, Senior Director Analyst said: “Multicloud is no longer a matter of ‘if’ — it’s a matter of ‘when,’” said Rao. “Multicloud computing lowers the risk of cloud provider lock-in, and can provide service resiliency and migration opportunities, in addition to the core cloud benefits of agility, scalability and elasticity.”
And speaking to Silicon, Eric Troyer, Chief Marketing Officer, Megaport explained: “I’ve heard it said that the ‘I’ in CIO should now stand for ‘integration.’ Certainly, the way applications and services integrate across the entire technology stack is a critical consideration. This is particularly true for how services are connected when utilising the public cloud.
“As an off-premise resource, public cloud availability zones can be many kilometres away from where enterprise IT infrastructure resides. This means latency and security are top concerns to ensuring scalability and performance of applications.”
Troyer continued: “This is causing the CIO to think more deeply about the network and how applications will be able to talk with one another over the network. This becomes all the more complicated with multi-cloud where an application in Google Cloud, for example, may need to directly communicate with applications in AWS, Azure, Oracle, IBM or any number of service providers.”
A hybrid cloud approach to IT infrastructure design and deployment offers flexible and secure hosting environments. As businesses continue to innovate, they will increasingly rely upon hybrid cloud architectures that have few limitations.