Find here out Whether Amazon Web Services is under threat of Microsoft Azure
Amazon.com, Inc.’s (NASDAQ:AMZN) Web Services (AWS) currently has 11 geographic locations and a large portion of the public cloud storage for enterprises and other organizations. Moreover, it has three popular cloud server models widely used in the world: Infrastructure as a service (IaaS), Platform as a service (PaaS), and Software as a service (SaaS). Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) Azure also offers similar services with a few technical differences compared to AWS.
In IaaS the vendor provides customer infrastructure such as computer resources, storage, and network. The customer primarily works on the software. In PaaS the vendor provides a platform to the customer to manage his own applications. Lastly, the SaaS server model provides customer subscriptions on applications that the vendor hosts.
So what makes Amazon the top vendor for Web Services? Amazon provides virtual private server, domain name systems, storage and content delivery, and a variety of database servers, which support MySQL, Oracle, SQL Server and PostgreSQL. The company also provides access management, application services, analytics and a number of other small scale products.
On the other hand, Microsoft Azure offers a “True Hybrid Cloud,” where it provides users the flexibility for a common platform so they can access on-premises and on public cloud. It features an enterprise-grade storage service, which bridges cloud, hybrid environments and on-premises platforms. It also provides first-party integration as compared to AWS’s third-party integration that makes the connection faster and more reliable with the use of the best identity platform for web applications over the cloud. The company says, Azure provides users a comprehensive list of options for its platform services and infrastructure. The array of services also provides security and privacy to the users pertaining to their data and information on the cloud, hybrid or on-premises platforms.
AWS is currently the market leader in IaaS services and incorporates larger technology-partnered ecosystems and multiple data centers closer to each other. The large scale of cloud storage and networking gives Amazon the ability to set higher cloud pricing than any other company. On the downside, AWS is more expensive for enterprises and complicated to understand, in terms of the audit bill the enterprise receives. It is still relatively new in terms of enterprise support on its platforms. However, Microsoft Azure is second to AWS in IaaS services, and provides users a relatively easy-to-use interface.
Microsoft Azure’s PaaS features automated virtual machine (VM) management in terms of security, service packs and application code. It offers an inter-operation between on-premises infrastructures upon which AWS still has not worked. Less good, Azure still faces a few gaps in networking and security along with a particular focus on Microsoft, with limitations to options on the Linux operating system (OS). However, the company has promised more products, which are still under development.
Doing a comparison on the number of features the user has control over in Azure against AWS, the latter offers users an additional graphical user interface (GUI). Another difference occurs in the pre-configured OS; AWS provides Red Hat Enterprise Linux whereas Azure provides CoreOS. The OS provided by AWS is more compatible with Linux as compared to Microsoft Azure.
The AWS features Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) that can cluster graphics processing unit (GPU) servers and compute instances, while the Azure’s VM features scheduler and a batch preview operation. Azure users can also block applications during auto-scaling, which is not available in AWS operations.
Additionally, the payment plans Azure offers its users include a flat monthly $29 for Developer, $300 for Standard, $1,000 for Professional Direct, and a custom plan according to which the user can select the service of his own choice without the presence of a flat payment. AWS offers its users a Developer plan for $49 monthly, a Business plan for minimum $100 monthly, and an Enterprise edition for minimum $1,500 monthly with no custom plan.
So ultimately, AWS does provide a bigger infrastructure and charges a significantly higher price for its server solutions as compared to Microsoft Azure, which is still growing and needs more development. Users who plan to keep their technological ecosystem related to Windows would gain benefit by using the Azure, while the ecosystem that encompass Linux would be most suitable for AWS users.
On the development front, enterprise users should be able to see more benefits when Azure rolls out more products. It would increase competition between the two companies, and ultimately benefit the enterprises with more features and better payment plans.