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Cloud Native Ecosystem / Cloud Services / Operations

Digital Evolution from Cloud Migration to Cloud Native Development

Legacy monolithic structures, with their rigid scalability, have often caused businesses like Blockbuster to be left behind. Now, businesses can provision resources on-demand, and reduce overheads associated with data center management.
Feb 6th, 2024 10:00am by
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Businesses are facing the dual challenge of evolving their legacy infrastructure while ensuring agility and scalability in their IT operations. The rise of cloud native technologies has paved the way for unprecedented flexibility and performance, with containerization, serverless computing and microservices being key drivers of this transformation.

According to Gartner, by 2025, 95% of all new digital workloads will be implemented on cloud native platforms. For businesses participating in this evolution, here’s what to know about the significance of cloud native principles and how they are revolutionizing the digital era.

The Shift from Legacy to Cloud Native

Transitioning from legacy systems to cloud native platforms is majorly driven by the need for greater agility and flexibility. Let’s consider Blockbuster and Netflix. Blockbuster’s reliance on physical infrastructure and hesitation to innovate led to its downfall, whereas Netflix, with its cloud-first approach, redefined entertainment.

Legacy monolithic structures, with their rigid scalability, have often caused businesses like Blockbuster to be left behind. They struggle with software intricacies, hardware bottlenecks and rising maintenance costs. A significant change came with the onset of IaaS and PaaS solutions. 

Businesses could provision resources on-demand and pay-as-they-go, and reduce overheads associated with data center management. Companies such as Spotify benefited immensely by using Google Cloud’s Bigtable for efficient data storage and retrieval. The obvious core advantage was the flexibility to scale on demand and only pay for utilized resources.

Such an increased demand for scalable infrastructure, a surge in web-based applications and the cost-effective model of cloud services catalyzed the exponential rise in cloud adoption.

Cloud Native Principles and Their Relation with Serverless and Microservices

Central to cloud native is containerization, often leveraging Docker containers and orchestrated by Kubernetes, which offers a standardized environment for deploying applications. This consistency is critical for businesses like Airbnb, which require uniformity across diverse environments to ensure application stability and reduce deployment issues.

Serverless computing, as seen with AWS Lambda, complements this by removing the infrastructure management burden from developers. Instead of worrying about server maintenance or uptime, businesses can focus purely on code and application functionality.

Importantly, containerization and serverless can integrate with platforms such as AWS Fargate, allowing for serverless deployment of containerized applications. This ensures both application consistency (from containers) and operational efficiency (from serverless).

Microservices further extend this synergy. These are independent application components that can be developed and deployed separately. With the foundational consistency offered by containerization, microservices can operate smoothly, and with orchestration tools like Kubernetes, their deployment and scaling become more manageable. Take Monzo Bank, for instance, which uses microservices to ensure faster feature releases and easier maintenance.

So, containerization provides a stable environment; serverless ensures efficient operations; and microservices give deployment flexibility. Together, they enable businesses to develop and maintain robust, scalable and cost-effective applications.

Advantages of Abstracted Cloud Infrastructure: From Scaling to Rapid Deployment

The abstracted nature of cloud infrastructure offers significant advantages for businesses, ensuring they can prioritize application features and functionality over infrastructural challenges. Here’s how:

  • Focus on Business Logic: With the complexity of infrastructure abstracted away, developers can zero in on crafting the business logic. No longer do they have to be sidetracked by the intricacies of server configurations, networking setups or storage details.
  • Dynamic Resource Scaling: Cloud native environments, backed by services like Amazon EC2 and Kubernetes, bring adaptability to the forefront. Whether applications demand the addition of more instances (horizontal scaling) or boosting the capabilities of an existing instance (vertical scaling), these platforms can swiftly adapt.
  • Accelerated Deployment Cycles: Integrating CI/CD tools with cloud native platforms streamlines code integration, testing and deployment. The outcome is drastically reduced release cycles, ensuring products and features reach users quicker and are refined based on their feedback.
  • Leveraging Low-Code for Speedy Development: Low-code platforms are becoming instrumental in cloud native evolution. They offer a quick way to develop applications, curtailing traditional coding roadblocks. Plus, their ability to offer seamless connectors, API integrations and migration tools ensures businesses transitioning from legacy systems don’t hit snags or suffer data losses. Their compatibility with popular SaaS tools and databases means data integration is a breeze, keeping data flows uninterrupted even during transitions.

It’s essential to critically assess a business’s core needs and align them with appropriate technological solutions. Before embracing new tech adoption, ensure its alignment with the current business model and its resonance with customer demands.

Business objectives should always steer technology choices. While strategies ought to dictate the tools, the advent of cloud native development in digital evolution ensures this alignment, emphasizing strategy over mere tool adoption.

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TNS owner Insight Partners is an investor in: Docker.
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