Public, Private, or Hybrid Cloud: The Future of the Enterprise
What is public, private, and hybrid cloud? How are they the same? How are they different. Here’s everything you need to know.
The global COVID-19 pandemic was a catalyst for a major transformation of the enterprise in 2020, accelerating plans and spending on cloud computing as organizations of every size and description rethought the way they do business. Gartner said spending on public, private, and hybrid cloud computing surpassed traditional IT expenditures for the first time during 2020. According to an October 2020 report by the firm, by 2024 more than 45 percent of “IT spending on system infrastructure, infrastructure software, application software, and business process outsourcing will shift from traditional solutions to the cloud.” Consistent with that forecast, IDC values the coming increase in cloud expenditures at more than $1 trillion by 2024.
That means your organization is likely in the midst of—or will soon embark on—a digital transformation of its own; one that will involve a significant investment in either public, private, or hybrid cloud infrastructure. According to a 2019 study by the Procedia Computer Science division of Elsevier, the type of cloud that constitutes the focus of your transformation depends on factors such as your current cloud strategy, organizational culture, dependency and compatibility with legacy systems, size of your organization, industry, geographic distribution, need for collaboration, and more.
Public, Private, & Hybrid Cloud According to Google
Whether your choice takes you down a path to public, private, or hybrid cloud, it’s worthwhile taking a step back to reflect on each option and whether its advantages are what you need to not only satisfy your current demands but also your organization’s long-term goals.
Public clouds are cloud services rendered over a network open to the public and are the most common type of cloud. Public clouds include resources like servers and storage delivered over the internet and shared with other organizations or cloud tenants. Public cloud infrastructure is owned and operated by a third-party cloud service provider that maintains and manages all the associated software, hardware, storage, and network devices.
Public clouds offer advantages like low costs, high reliability, and the flexibility to scale up or down as needed without a long-term commitment to a vendor, or restraint by license capacity. Popular public cloud service providers include Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud, IBM Cloud, and Microsoft Azure.
Private clouds are clouds owned and operated by a single organization, enabling it to share computing devices, information, data, and other resources on-demand. A private cloud may be managed by the organization or by a third party, hosted internally or externally. Private clouds require a commitment to operating and securing a virtualized business environment.
Private clouds offer advantages like flexibility to customize your cloud to accommodate current and changing business needs, the control that comes from ownership, and the scalability and efficiency of a public cloud. Up-front costs are significant but may amortize to make sense for a long-term strategy. Some vendors in the private cloud arena are Amazon Web Services, Cisco, Dell, Google Cloud, IBM, Microsoft, Oracle, and VMware.
A hybrid cloud is a cloud computing service composed of a combination of private and public cloud services. Hybrid clouds give organizations the flexibility to customize resource allocation with outside cloud services while retaining necessary control and security of internal resources while enabling workloads to move between private and public infrastructure as needs and costs change. In short, hybrid clouds allow an organization to leverage the advantages of public and private clouds. Vendors in the hybrid cloud space include Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud, Microsoft Azure, and Rackspace.
Whether public, private, or hybrid, cloud computing is a mature market. The risks that come with early adoption are well behind us and organizations of all descriptions trust public, private, and hybrid cloud services and platforms to run their business and deliver services. According to the independent Hosting Tribunal community:
- 94 percent of enterprises already use a cloud service;
- In 2021, public cloud infrastructure will grow by 35 percent;
- 30 percent of all IT budgets are allocated to cloud computing;
- Organizations leverage almost 5 different cloud platforms on average;
- 50 percent of enterprises spend more than $1.2 million on cloud services annually; and,
- 66 percent of enterprises already have a central cloud team or a cloud center of excellence.
But that doesn’t mean the market is static and that the players, platforms, and strategies are established. Because the market for public, private, and hybrid cloud is growing, it is attracting not only greater interest from user organizations, but also vendors hoping to tap into the boom with innovative products and services.
That trend was described in a recent CRN article as “multi-cloud and joint cloud provider offerings.” CRN cites Hyoun Park, CEO and chief analyst at tech advisor Amalgam Insights, as predicting these trends will emerge when smaller cloud tech and service vendors “realize they can partner to accelerate go-to-market launches, capitalize on mutual strengths, and ‘take on the 800-pound gorilla’ that is AWS.”
In fact, CRN went on to say that the public, private, and hybrid cloud trend is evolving to include a shift toward edge computing as 5G connectivity becomes standardized within the enterprise. CRN says that, according to Forrester, “Over the next three years, buyers will shift their cloud strategies toward the edge to capture all this innovation and become more connected.”
What does that mean for the CIO tasked with articulating and executing their organization’s cloud strategy? According to CRN, Park believes that—whether public, private, or hybrid—cloud platforms “will continue to develop automated cloud orchestration and optimization as the complexity of managing both the quantity and quality of interconnected services across applications and services overwhelms even the savviest of IT organizations.”
That means that, in order for organizations to realize maximal value from their investments, whether public, private, or hybrid cloud environments must be managed with tools that are sophisticated enough to see across public and on-premises infrastructure, gather all the relevant data to monitor health, availability, and reliability of their systems and services, and deliver automated IT operations processes at machine speed in order to keep up with the volume, velocity, and variety of data as these systems communicate.
Platform Purpose-Built for the Cloud
ScienceLogic is proud to offer such a platform. The ScienceLogic SL1 platform is highly adept at providing the visibility needed to see across your public, private, or hybrid cloud infrastructure, deliver rich, contextual detail of your enterprise topology, and automatically gather all your data into a consolidated, real-time operational data lake that can feed your systems with the kind of reliable intelligence needed to deliver rich, actionable insights that allow IT to automate necessary ITOps processes.
The future of the enterprise is here, and whether you choose a public, private, or hybrid cloud approach, we’d love to talk about your vision, share our expertise, and help you down your path to transforming your enterprise.