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App Development
6 minutes read

Serverless Computing Vs. Cloud Computing: What’s The Difference? 

By Jose Gomez
By Jose Gomez
App Development
6 minutes read

If your organization is looking for HiTech backend services, you will be interested in learning more about serverless computing vs. cloud computing. While cloud services have become a popular option for businesses of all sizes, there are several different approaches to cloud computing your organization could take. 

This post will explain what serverless computing and cloud computing are and how they differ from one another. If your organization is interested in cloud app development for mobile or web apps, you will want to understand how cloud services and serverless technologies differ and interact with one another. 

Understanding Serverless Computing and Cloud Computing 

When it comes to cloud services, many different terms get used, and serverless computing is one of the most popular. Many people think that serverless computing and cloud computing are the same things. However, while some might think these terms are interchangeable, they are not. 

The confusion between these terms stems from their similarities. It is important to know that serverless computing is a type of cloud computing. Let’s take a closer look at these terms and provide a clear definition of each so that their differences become clear. 

Cloud Computing Defined 

Cloud computing refers to technology resources and services delivered over the Internet. The most common example of cloud computing is data storage, but other resources and services can also be delivered over the Internet, including the underlying operating system, software, server management, networking, and more. As you can see, cloud computing is a broad term that applies to various things. 

Cloud computing in the modern business landscape is almost unavoidable. Cloud services scale on demand, improve organizational agility, and lower IT operating costs for businesses. Most modern business software is delivered via a cloud platform, and a cloud infrastructure is the most popular organizational choice for data storage. 

Cloud technology has improved rapidly since its introduction to the world. Now cloud providers can offer more computing resources and IT services than ever before, which has led to the creation of serverless computing. 

Serverless Computing Defined 

Serverless computing is a type of cloud computing where an application’s backend or infrastructure is managed by a cloud provider. The term serverless computing is a bit of a misnomer, and it leads some people to believe that there are no servers involved in the process at all. However, anyone familiar with application development will know that a server will always be necessary whether a serverless computing model is used or not. 

In essence, serverless apps utilize virtual server resources to scale on demand. In practice, the serverless approach to development enables developers to focus solely on the code they are writing without worrying about managing and provisioning physical servers. When you choose to use a serverless architecture for your application, a cloud service provider is responsible for all tasks associated with server management, which can take up a great deal of time. 

The Benefits of Serverless Computing 

There are several excellent reasons why serverless computing has become a popular option for an organization of all sizes. The top benefits of serverless computing include the following:

  • Cost savings
  • Increased productivity
  • Faster time to market 

Cost Savings 

Provisioning and managing servers is an expensive undertaking. Serverless architecture has become a popular option for businesses because it uses a pay-as-you-go model. Doesn’t it make more sense to only pay for the server resources your organization is actually using? When you have to provision your own servers, your business will likely end up paying for more computing power than it actually uses. 

In addition, your organization will always need to be prepared for a sudden spike in server demand, which will lead to your business investing in more resources than it needs at the moment. Serverless computing utilizes automatic scaling, so when demand rises, your business has access to the computing power necessary to meet the current level of user demand. 

If you only want to pay for the resources your business uses, the serverless model is a perfect fit for your organization. 

Increased Productivity 

Management of an application’s underlying infrastructure is a significant part of the development process. Serverless platforms allow developers to build stunning applications without requiring the design or management of the underlying infrastructure. As a result, development teams will have more time to focus on developing innovative technical solutions and designing immersive interfaces. 

Serverless environments increase productivity by eliminating time-consuming infrastructure maintenance tasks. Imagine what your development team could do with more time to focus on function and app design. Leave all of the time-consuming infrastructure management tasks to a cloud provider and spend more time creating applications that your users will love.

Faster Time to Market 

A more productive development team can get your application to market faster. Sometimes being the first product to market is an insurmountable advantage. Don’t fall behind your competitors. By using serverless services and virtual machines, you can build and deploy your application faster. 

Serverless computing offers your organization a fully managed backend. Essentially, your developers create the frontend of the application and leave the backend to a cloud provider. As a result, your business can get its application to market faster than the traditional development approach. 

Popular Serverless Providers 

Three providers dominate the serverless market, Google Cloud, Microsoft Azure, and AWS. Each provider offers a host of serverless functions and virtual machines, but AWS is the industry leader because it offers more options and compute services than any other provider. The most popular serverless service is AWS Lambda. In addition, AWS also has a rich ecosystem of AWS partners that are experts in all things AWS. All AWS partners are thoroughly vetted and approved by Amazon, so your business can trust that they are working with the best development teams. 

Of course, there are alternatives to the top three providers. IBM Cloud is another popular serverless service provider that businesses choose to work with. The one thing your organization should be wary of is vendor lock-in.

Since your business won’t have physical hardware providing the computing resources for the backend of its application, it is too easy to use the same provider for every service. The more services you add, the more difficult it is to change providers and the more susceptible your applications are to vendor issues like outages. 

Final Thoughts

There are advantages and disadvantages to serverless computing. However, it is the best option for many businesses. If you want to learn more about serverless computing and how it can benefit your business, reach out to an app development partner. A skilled partner will help you make the best serverless choices for your business and application. Now that you know more about serverless computing vs. cloud computing, hopefully, you are prepared to utilize these technologies for your business. 

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