6 examples of a Good Cloud Service Support
By Kamal Jacob
Over the past decade, cloud computing services have become a strong driving force for businesses in the technology world. Cloud is no longer considered as a tool or simply a storage framework. In recent years, cloud computing has been playing a major role in every business’ strategy. Given the massive growth of cloud computing, most businesses in different domains have started to embrace this technology in different ways to achieve their business targets faster and efficiently. According to a recent survey report from LogicMonitor, about 83% of enterprise workloads will be running in the cloud by the year 2020.
In today’s business scenario, cloud computing and its services are becoming the foundation for most of the IT businesses and their infrastructure. Be it a small start-up company or the industry leader – the cloud technology provides a level playing field and the perfect platform for business to have a healthy competition.
While cloud computing is known to improve collaboration and productivity, businesses also realize savings specific to cost and scalability by implementing a cloud strategy. Keep reading as we discuss how leading businesses across different industries have adopted cloud computing services and the benefits they have achieved from this implementation.
If you recently had a chat conversation with any business on their website on the chat window pop-up, chances are high that your chat was powered by Intercom. Intercom is the leading customer messaging app platform. Intercom chat is used by various businesses in different industries as a tool to generate more sales. More than 30,000 businesses use Intercom to grow their business.
During the early days, the engineers at Intercom migrated a live database (with over two billion rows) to Amazon Aurora with almost no downtime and no data loss. In an effort to free up space and resources for further innovation, foster product development and deliver better customer value, the team at Intercom took advantage of Amazon Web Services (AWS) Lambda. By implementing a serverless solution based on Amazon Athena and Amazon Kinesis Data Firehose for a business logic upgrade in the billing system, Intercom reduced the costs by 90 percent and saved almost 800 hours of maintenance every year. This implementation also makes it easy for the engineers to easily adapt to any immediate changes by simply updating the SQL definitions. Intercom was confident enough to even move their storage account (with user data) to Amazon DynamoDB.
With the move to AWS, Intercom delivers the best real-time conversations with a low latency and a consistent speed that helps its customers to generate quality leads and grow their business.
Freshdesk, a global leader in customer support software with 28,000 customers, chose Amazon AWS as the core platform for their infrastructure to support their cloud-based SaaS solutions. Being a SaaS-based platform, Freshdesk wanted to move to the cloud to save on the investment cost in setting up a local data center and also to focus the efforts towards building a great product.
Before moving to AWS, Freshdesk had the “Pay-per-use” model. With the help of Amazon EC2 Reserved Instances, the biggest benefit for Freshdesk was the reduction in costs by almost 75 percent. Freshdesk opted to host their platform on Amazon’s cloud mainly for the accessibility, availability and security features. With AWS infrastructure, Freshdesk support agents can have all-time access to the customer data from anywhere. Thanks to the scalability feature in AWS, Freshdesk has been able to scale their business and almost double their customer base.
Freshdesk also makes use of Amazon Redshift for the next generation reporting capabilities. In addition, the entire deployment of the application, infrastructure and the code is completely automated by using AWS OpsWorks.
Airbnb is the world’s largest accommodation-sharing site where you get to stay in someone’s house instead of a hotel. Users can register with Airbnb as a host and list their house (or a portion in the house) for people to stay. Founded in 2008, Airbnb is available across 191+ countries in the world with over 6 million listings. As the business grew in numbers, in order to cater to the heavy demand and focus on scaling the business, Airbnb opted to switch to AWS cloud-based infrastructure. Airbnb uses over 1000 Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) instances for their application, servers, production traffic and so on. Airbnb also makes use of the Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3) to store backups and high-quality user images of over 50TB.
Airbnb is an early adopter of the Amazon Relational Database Service (Amazon RDS) as it simplifies the administrative tasks associated with databases. They migrated their entire database (MySQL) to Amazon RDS with just a 15-minute downtime. Airbnb stores over 2 Billion rows of data in Amazon RDS.
Framestore, an Oscar-winning creative studio and visual effects production firm, and well recognized for delivering the visual effects for Hollywood movies like Avatar, Guardians of the Galaxy, makes use of Google Cloud services in their back end processing.
For every single visual effect, the team at Framestore carefully plan the scope, predict and plan the effort as the entire process consumes a lot of computing power. Certain times, when working on multiple projects at the same time, Framestore uses up almost 15,000 Intel cores of computing power. When the demand increased, the team found it difficult without the resources to finish their projects successfully.
Framestore took advantage of Google Cloud that gives them the option of extending the resources on demand when there is a high production requirement. Framestore opted for the Preemptible Virtual Machines which gave them the perfect combination of cost efficiency and capacity to meet the demand. When needed, additional instances of the machine can be spun up according to the requirement and spun down when not required.
Google Cloud (Google Cloud Storage and Google Cloud Networking) has brought a significant change in how Framestore plan for their visual effect. It gives them a lot of confidence to plan and deliver multiple projects and still stay on top of the different tasks involved during the process.
5. United States Government
Not only enterprises are making the shift to cloud services; even Governments have started to adopt cloud technologies for different reasons. Since the “Cloud First” strategy was implemented in 2010, the United States Government has taken a leap forward in making use of cloud computing services to save billions of dollars. Few of the noted government cloud projects are –
a) USA.gov – USA.gov is the United States government’s official Web portal run by the General Services Administration (GSA). According to the report by Frost and Sullivan, post the migration to the cloud, the website costs the government 72% less than the cost before the migration. There was also a significant improvement in the upgrade time to just one day with almost no downtime (99% availability). Moving to the cloud helped the GSA to save money, time and increased the scalability factor.
b) The CluE Project – Over the last few years, the National Science Foundation (NSF) has made partnerships with IBM and Google Academic Cloud Computing in an initiative to fund the Big Data research. This project is named the CluE program (Cluster Exploratory program). NSF funds almost 20% of all the federally-funded academic research projects.
Similarly, IBM helped to implement a government-funded cloud computing center in Wuxi (China). IBM used the IBM e-commerce patterns and the IBM® SmartCloud® Orchestrator components for this deployment. This cloud solution reduces the service deployment time by almost 85% and brings a 75% reduction in the system recovery time in case of unplanned downtime.
ASOS is the largest online fashion and beauty retailer in the UK market. With over 30000 products and serving more than 15 million customers, the success of ASOS attributes mainly to the adoption of cloud infrastructure. ASOS transformed from an on-premises eCommerce system to using microservices on a Microsoft Azure platform. Given the resiliency of the Azure platform across multiple data centers, ASOS was relieved from a single point of failure problems. They also make use of Azure Cosmos DB to handle the ordering, inventory, product recommendations, and other similar functions. In addition to Cosmos DB, they also take advantage of Azure SQL Database and Azure Traffic Manager to deliver the best user experience.
The latest advancements in cloud computing give businesses across different industries the perfect solution for their infrastructure problems and the golden opportunity to accomplish and deliver the best cloud services to businesses at variegated levels. If you want to learn to design, implement and manage a cloud computing system, feel free to check out our PG Certificate program in Cloud Computing.