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The Key Benefits of Cloud Computing

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Cloud computing enables the sharing of resources to leverage economies of scale and maximize the effectiveness of the shared resources. Cloud resources are not only shared by multiple users, but are also dynamically reallocated based on demand.


5 Key Characteristics of Cloud Computing


The definition of cloud computing includes 5 key characteristics: 

  1. On-demand self-service
  2. Broad network access
  3. Resource pooling
  4. Rapid scalability
  5. Measured service

9 Key Benefits of the Cloud


Cloud computing exhibits these 9 benefits:

  1. Agility: allows users to take advantage of technological infrastructure resources being dynamically reallocated in response to demand.
  2. Application programming interface: (API) facilitates interaction between humans and computers through accessibility to software.
  3. Cost: as infrastructure is typically provided by a third party, costs are significantly reduced when compared to purchasing, implementing, and maintaining a separate infrastructure. 
  4. Device and location independence: enables users to access systems remotely, without being tied to a particular device or geographic location.
  5. Maintenance: as applications are hosted centrally, updates can be released without the need for users to install new software.
  6. Reliability: improves with the use of multiple redundant sites, which makes well-designed cloud computing suitable for business continuity and disaster recovery.
  7. Scalability and elasticity: on-demand provisioning of resources in real-time helps cope with demand and avoid network strain during peak times by increasing capacity. 
  8. Security: improves due to the centralization of data and increased security-focused resources. Sharing the cost of security measures across all users in a cloud often leads to improved information security, as providers can devote resources that many individual customers cannot afford.
  9. Virtualization: allows sharing of servers and storage devices. Applications can be easily migrated from one physical server to another with minimal disruption of service.

3 Main Service Models Available in the Cloud


  1. Infrastructure as a service (IaaS): providers offer computers, whether physical or (more often) virtual machines, and often additional resources such as a disk image library, storage, firewalls, load balancers, IP addresses, virtual local area networks (VLANs), and software bundles. Providers supply these resources on-demand. Users install and maintain operating system images and application software on the cloud infrastructure. Providers typically bill IaaS services on a utility computing basis; cost reflects the amount of resources allocated and consumed. 
  2. Platform as a service (PaaS): providers deliver a computing platform, typically including operating system, programming language execution environment, database, and web server. Application developers can develop and run their software solutions on a cloud platform without the cost and complexity of buying and managing the platform. Resources such as processing and storage can be scaled automatically to match demand. PaaS examples include execution runtime, database, web server, development tools.
  3. Software as a service (SaaS): users are provided access to application software and databases. Cloud providers manage the infrastructure and platforms that run the applications. This allows for reduced IT costs by outsourcing hardware and software maintenance and support to the provider. SaaS is sometimes referred to as "on-demand software" and can be priced on a pay-per-use basis or as a subscription fee. Examples of SaaS include CRM, email, virtual desktop, communication, and games.


Interested in starting your own cloud-based service, or leveraging an existing service? Call Symmetry at (310) 536-6190 or contact us online to find out more about the cloud.



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