To Cloud or to Multi-Cloud?
Cloud computing is a mature and compelling technology trend with increasing rates in adoption across many industries. Enterprises are not simply using cloud, but actually using services from multiple cloud providers within various organizational levels and departments. It is not uncommon to find multiple public IaaS cloud platforms or different SaaS services consumed in disjointed pockets within a single organization. This seems like a natural evolution of the cloud technology and has given rise to the new concept of the Multi-Cloud.
A recent survey by Right Scale indicates that more than 70% of both the enterprises and SMB markets are already consuming public or private cloud services in various degrees ranging from heavy production use to pilot implementations under a focused cloud adoption strategy. According to Gartner, total spending on cloud services will increase by over 90% from $110 billion in 2012 to $210 billion by the time we enter 2016. The Multi-cloud paradigm may very well be the key factor here.
What is Multi-Cloud?
The Multi-Cloud paradigm entails the consumption of multiple IaaS, PaaS or SaaS solutions coupled with multiple private cloud platforms. Similar to the hybrid cloud – a unified cloud solution that involves a combination of a public and private cloud platform internally, Multi-cloud becomes the logical next step of hybrid clouds by bringing multiple dimensions into the same concept.
What drives the Multi-Cloud model?
The undercurrent of the Multi-Cloud paradigm has been flowing for some time.
Key drivers include:
- Rapidly Changing Business Delivery & Consumption Model
The mobility and collaboration technology wave has changed the way businesses operate. With most having a global workforce, geographically disperse customers and diverse device types consuming business services, enterprises have quickly realized the importance of maintaining a high level of performance and availability of their business applications. This requires a robust yet flexible infrastructure and platform services support, therefore fueling the need within enterprises to consume services from multiple cloud service providers.
- Resilient Applications for Business Continuity
The industry has witnessed multiple cloud outages over the last year. Reasons varied from software errors, climatic disruptions, and scale failures. Even the major players in the public cloud markets have not been immune to this. The industry burnt its fingers, grappled, and coped up with these issues, emerging wiser and knowing better than to put all their eggs in one basket.
- Inadvertent Service Proliferation
As already noted, many organizations are in some capacity consuming services of multiple cloud providers already. Managing this proliferation and turning it into a systematic delivery model was already required.
To sum it up, the seed of Multi-Cloud has already been sown and the cloud landscape will need to evolve into this model sooner or later.