Modern consumer-driven businesses need to deliver new services more quickly than their competition to stay ahead of the game. Successful consumer-driven businesses are achieving this by going cloud-native.
To understand why consumer-driven digital businesses are adopting the cloud-native approach, let’s analyze some of the foundational tenets of cloud-native.
Agile is a popular software development approach that involves a collaboration across cross-functional teams and their customers encompassing rapid, flexible, incremental, and iterative development. Having the ability to fail fast and course-correct allows businesses to react and move fast to create an application that fills a market gap.
When cloud-native automation tooling for continuous integration and continuous delivery are integrated with an agile approach, the business has the ability to achieve a faster time to market and time to value with the potential to disrupt.
DevOps is a group of practices that converges software development (Dev) and the IT operations (Ops) in order to reduce an application development lifecycle while increasing the quality of produced software that is delivered continuously. Besides adopting new automated toolchains, this requires a real culture change.
Spanning the whole delivery pipeline, the goals of DevOps include faster time to market and value, shortened lead-time between fixes and new releases and versions, faster recovery time in the event of a release failure, and faster deployments.
Microservices is a variation of services-oriented architecture (SOA) that involves services that are “loosely coupled” and decomposed. This results in the application being more modular, granular, and easier to test. Microservices works well in a continuous delivery and deployment setting enabled by DevOps.
Containers provide a standardized way to package up application code along with its configuration and dependencies such as libraries and binaries. They are portable and can move from one computing environment or cloud to another. Their lightweight nature compared to virtual machines allows them to be instantiated and decommissioned faster, freeing up precious resources from hosts.
The portable nature of containers also avoids vendor lock-in to the underlying environment (whether it be on-premise or in the cloud). In an enterprise setting, containers require an orchestration platform to help manage the lifecycle including controlling and automating container-specific tasks, provisioning, deploying, and scaling up containers, allocation of resources, and health monitoring.
Serverless, or Functions as a Service (FaaS), is when a public cloud provider such as AWS, Azure, or Google Cloud dynamically allocates resources to execute a piece of code (a function) based on an event being triggered by an HTTP request or some database or scheduled event. FaaS is in essence a managed service and the cloud provider only charges for the resources used to run the code.
In this new serverless world, a microservices approach is used to create these stateless functions. With the adoption of technologies like IoT and sensors across consumer-driven industries, having cloud functions triggered to react and analyze in an abstracted manner from the event delivers a whole new way of extending an application in a flexible manner.
Cloud-native computing is forcing organizations to think about new models and new delivery methods. In an era where velocity is critical to success, a growing number of companies especially in the retail and consumer-focused industries are embracing a cloud-native approach for application development and deployment. This approach is helping companies use customer data to guide their operations, make better-informed business decisions, and create a highly satisfying customer experience. Cloud-native gives unmatched business speed, agility, and insight to help companies identify customer needs early using customer data and respond almost instantly with high-velocity cloud-native application development.