Research recently carried out by Dimensional Research has unveiled an interesting trend about technologists: majority of enterprises are looking into the deployment to multiple clouds in both the short and long-term. Dimensional Research also reports that 77% of IT decision makers are planning to implement multi-cloud architecture, while a staggering 91% intend to at least implement some sort of cloud-based solution within the next twelve months. Of these respondents, 48% plan to deploy six or more cloud services. The top applications slated to be moved to the cloud during this implementation are storage/backup, business intelligence, disaster recovery, project management, and content management.
In essence, multi-cloud is a scenario where a business implements multiple different services, platforms, and applications into its cloud architecture. Rather than using a hybrid cloud, a public cloud, or a private cloud, the business merges several different clouds into one complete platform.
Why is all this important? Let us examine this through two examples:
Music Mastermind is a consumer-facing company that allows music lovers to compose their own songs online. Using their PCs, would-be composers can log into Music Mastermind’s ZyaMusic.com, where a system captures the user tapping a beat and humming a tune into a PC microphone. Zya can take the melody and convert it into any instrument, as directed by the end user, then apply the beat. Splices or hooks from a wide range of licensed, popular music can be added as well, such as guitar riffs. For operational efficiency, Music Mastermind established a large IBM iDataPlex server cluster with Intel Xeon E5 CPUs and installed Citrix Systems’ CloudStack, a version of Open Stack open source code, to run it as a cloud. Then it turned the operation of the cluster over to RightScale, a front-end cloud management service, so that their operations staff could get back to building new Zya features.
Coupa Software, an online purchase orders/procurement software as a service provider, has to ensure that it is available to all customers, 24×7. Coupa concentrates on creating online purchasing functionality, while basing its system operations in Amazon Web Services. Again, RightScale is the front-end service managing its IaaS use. Although in this case it is not a hybrid, private/public cloud operation, but use of two different public infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) suppliers.
These two examples demonstrate the top reasons why an enterprise could consider a multi-cloud strategy:
IaaS services need to cut across boundaries, sometimes necessitating the need to work with a local IaaS provider where your existing IaaS provider does not have reach.
Growth: If the enterprise is a small company with a really niche offering, and has the potential to grow exponentially, multi-cloud strategy is the only way to go.
Demand spikes: If the business is characterized by spikes in infrastructure demand across geographies, a multi-cloud strategy is the preferred route to adopt.
Preventing vendor lock-in: While all of the above are important, another independent reason to deploy multiple cloud computing partners is to avoid vendor lock in.
So based on the scenarios specific to you and strategically deploying the multi cloud strategy can help your organization leverage the best of technology and move forward effectively.