What is cloud computing?
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Cloud computing includes the delivery of software, infrastructure, and storage over the Internet (either as separate components or a complete platform) based on user demand. You can think of it as a coherent, large-scale, publicly accessible collection of compute, storage, and networking resources, that are available for use in exchange for payment based on actual resources consumed. Data processing infrastructure – servers, storage, and bandwidth – can be procured from the cloud, consumed as needed, and then relinquished back to the cloud, all in a matter of minutes.

There are basically three layers to cloud computing. Companies use them differently based on what they offer. Cloud computing is often provided "as a service" over the Internet, typically in the form of infrastructure as a service (IaaS), platform as a service (PaaS), or software as a service (SaaS).

Characteristics of cloud computing

  • Elasticity: The resources are consumed as per the requirement and ceded back to the cloud after usage.
  • Multi-tenant: It enables sharing of resources and costs across a large number of users, improving efficiency and utilization.
  • On demand: The resources are available on-demand, and its usage is metered.
  • Ubiquitous access: The resources can be accessed anywhere and anytime, provided access to the internet is available.
  • Usage metered: The resource usage is measured and metered per client and application on a daily, weekly, monthly and yearly basis.

Benefits of cloud computing

  • Predictable capital expenditure and minimal operational expenditure 
  • Efficient utilization of resources 
  • Scale as you grow, Pay as you go model 
  • Flexibility, mobility and anywhere IT 
  • Reduced total cost of ownership 
  • Shorter time to market 
  • Business focused IT