This is one of the founding principles of cloud computing: infrastructure as a service (IAAS) enables enterprises to lease hardware from suppliers to run their own services. IAAS is often recommended for small and medium-sized businesses, as it offers significant savings in hardware and time for the IT department. We review the advantages of this system.
The IAAS a booming market driven by Amazon
According to Gartner, the global market for Infrastructure as a Service was valued – in 2019 – at nearly 44.5 billion dollars. This represents growth of 37.3% over 2018, when this market was worth $32.3 billion.
Amazon, with its subsidiaryAmazon Web Services (AWS) remains the leading player and alone accounts for 45% of the IAAS market share.Its revenues grew by 29% between 2018 and 2019 to reach $20 billion (twice as much as its first competitor: Microsoft Azure).
Why is the IAAS of interest to companies ?
The Infrastructure as a Service presents many use cases. A company that subscribes to an IAAS offer can host a complex website, ensure the operation and testing of its apps, and of course store the data generated by its activity…
It is this last element that makes the IAAS so important today: if before Big Data and data exploitation would have implied colossal hardware investments to store and process the data, now the infrastructure can be rented and is accessible for much smaller budgets. So if we have now moved into the data age, it’s largely thanks to the existence of this component of Cloud computing.
In addition to the savings in terms of hardware investment, The IAAS also allows companies to outsource a large part of the functions usually reserved for its CIO, namely the design and maintenance of this infrastructure which concentrates at the same time additional costs, but also the time of the human resources of the ISD, often scarce. The role of the latter can thus evolve to see it focus on its most strategic functions as we mentioned in a previous article.
Another argument in favor of the IAAS that is worth mentioning is that : its flexibility. While each provider is distinguished by its own subscription terms and associated services, the founding principle remains the same : the client only pays for what he or she needs. This is all the more significant when it comes to Big Data strategies where the volume of data stored and exploited can vary greatly from one year to the next. In fact, the client company is not a prisoner of definitive investments, and can even afford to test new configurations – over given periods of time – without breaking the bank.
Public, private or hybrid: which strategy to adopt ?
Public IAAS for small businesses that want to save money and be flexible
The IAAS is called “public” when the proposed resources are shared among all of the supplier’s customers. This model is the most widespread, least expensive, and ensures network scalability and flexibility. However, it requires certain limits in terms of confidentiality and security that are not possible for all companies. Economical and practical, the public IAAS is generally recommended to small and medium sized companies.
For needs related to data storage and processing, however, be sure to check that your IAAS provider complies with the requirements now imposed by the RGPD. The most important in this matter: servers used to store data from European customers must be located on the soil of the Old Continent.
The private IAAS for large companies that value security and confidentiality
A contrario the IAAS is said “private” is a model that seems to go against the very principle of IAAS. In this one, The company invests in IT resources that can then be distributed across all departments as needed. These resources, their maintenance and physical security, no longer depend on a third party supplier, and all the costs are therefore borne by the company. In this case, the latter loses the flexibility of the public IAAS but gains full control of its infrastructure (particularly useful for international companies that have to deal with different regulations – such as the DPGR – depending on the geographical area).
Note that some IAAS providers (generally among the largest) are today able to guarantee their clients a private structure. Without investing in equipment, companies can benefit from resources that are completely dedicated to them. These offers are most often accompanied by outsourcing and administration services in order to relieve the CIOs of their responsibilities. If the private IAAS tends towards more confidentiality and assures the user company a complete control of its resources and their security, the fact remains that it is a much more expensive model that will most often be used by large companies that can afford it (companies in the banking sector are usually the perfect example).
Hybrid IAAS: adopting the best of both worlds
Some companies are opting for hybrid IAAS strategies, to know combine their own resources with those of a third party supplier. As with private modes, sensitive data and imperative services can be deployed on the company’s internal resources to guarantee their security and reliability. External resources, dependent on a third-party provider, are used for less critical services.
The company thus benefits from the best of both worlds: confidentiality, security, flexibility… However, the operation can be more costly than the simple use of a public IAAS, and more importantly, more complex. This type of strategy can therefore be operated by any type of company that would have an IT department with significant expertise in these aspects of networking and facilities management.
Of course, many other strategies can be evoked depending on the company’s use case. The next HUBDAY Future of Retail & E-commerce will study concretely how brands can use the IAAS to develop their business results.
IAAS, PAAS, SAAS: the trinity of cloud computing
Cloud computing is often broken down into three major service schools: IAAS, PAAS, and SAAS.. Infrastructure as a Service (IAAS) consists of no more and no less than the rental of computer and network hardware (as well as all the basic software required to operate this infrastructure) from a third party supplier in order to operate its own services.
Next comes the Platform as a Service (PAAS) which, in addition to the infrastructure, offers beneficiary companies a scalable application ecosystem to enable the development and testing of new applications (in fact the PAAS is generally aimed at developers of mobile software and applications).
Finally, comes the Software as a Service (SAAS), which is generally much better known, which consists of the rental of an online application service.
Article written by : Thibaud Deschamps for Hubinstitute
Source : https://hubinstitute.com/2020/DigitalBusiness/Retail/Transformation/Reperes-IaaS-Paas-SaaS-DSI