If you are interested in app development, you might be asking what is AWS serverless architecture. Serverless architecture is a HiTech innovation that has revolutionized cloud app development. While serverless architectures are not the sole domain of AWS, Amazon probably has the broadest product offerings through AWS services. As a result, when discussing serverless architectures, AWS is a big part of the conversation.
This post will explain what serverless architecture is and its benefits. We will also cover some of the top challenges associated with serverless architecture to give your organization a complete picture of this mobile and web app development approach. Serverless computing is gaining a lot of popularity now, and for a good reason. Savvy businesses will take a hard look at this approach to see if it is the right choice for their applications.
Serverless Architecture: What Is It?
Unless you are well-versed in software development, you likely have no idea what architecture is as it relates to app development. All websites, web apps, and mobile apps require servers, storage systems, and databases. These aspects of an application are critical to function. However, maintaining servers, databases, and other systems takes time and technical expertise.
Furthermore, businesses need to ensure that they have enough server and database resources to meet the demands of their users. When user demand overwhelms server resources, the application crashes. Therefore, application infrastructure maintenance and support is a vital but time-consuming task.
Serverless architecture is a new approach to application development and deployment. Instead of provisioning servers, databases, etc., developers run their applications on the cloud through a service provider. In the serverless architecture approach, a provider like AWS is responsible for provisioning and maintaining servers and other services.
As a result, development teams no longer have to be responsible for the time-consuming work of provisioning and maintaining servers and can focus all of their efforts on developing new services and applications. In essence, serverless computing enables development teams to offload time-consuming but vital work to a cloud services provider like AWS.
This is what AWS serverless architecture is, a cloud-based service. Your business needs to understand that AWS is not the only serverless architecture provider. Google, Microsoft, and others also offer serverless computing services. However, AWS boasts more services and capabilities than any other option. Your development team can use over 100 different AWS services to build world-class applications.
The Benefits of Serverless Architecture
Serverless architectures have gotten popular because of the unmatched capabilities they offer. Today, large and small businesses are leveraging the unique benefits of serverless computing to further their business interests. The top benefits of serverless architecture include the following:
- Cost savings
Serverless architecture scales as needed. Is your application prepared for a rush of users or traffic? If your application uses a traditional server architecture, your organization will have to provision more server resources when demand spikes. However, what if demand for your application fluctuates? Then, you either pay for server resources you won’t fully use or you allow your app to crash when demand outpaces your server resources.
Serverless architectures automatically scale up and down to meet demand in real time. So when using a serverless architecture, your organization can be confident that it will always have the right amount of server resources to meet user demand without wasting money on resources that won’t be used.
Serverless architecture saves organizations significant money because they only pay for the resources they use. Your organization will never overpay for server resources that are not being utilized. AWS and all other cloud service providers charge on a usage basis. Ensure you have exactly what your application requires, and never pay for unused resources.
There are few services available that offer this kind of deal to organizations. In addition, with the rapid scalability of serverless architecture, organizations can save on cost while ensuring that they always have enough resources to meet the actual demand of their audience.
When discussing cost savings and scalability, it is easy to lose sight of increased productivity. However, an increase in development productivity is one of the biggest benefits of serverless architecture. Developers no longer have to spend time maintaining and provisioning server hardware. As a result, they can spend more time focusing on creating innovative new applications and services for your organization.
It is hard to measure the value of additional time. However, even if your team fails to develop any new app ideas or services with the extra time they will have, your organization is still saving money on resources and meeting user demand in real time with serverless computing services.
The Challenges of Serverless Architecture
Even though serverless architecture sounds like a slam dunk after reading the benefits, there are some challenges with this approach that your organization should consider before making a decision, including:
- Loss of control
- Vendor lock-in
Loss of Control
When you offload responsibilities to a service provider, you are also giving up control. For example, if there is a hardware issue or data center outage with your cloud service provider, your application could be affected, and there is nothing your team can do about it. When choosing the serverless architecture approach, your organization is dependent on the provider to ensure your application and services stay online. Outages are not a common occurrence, but in the event one happens, your team won’t be able to do anything, which can be very frustrating.
AWS and other vendors offer a myriad of additional cloud services, and while you could theoretically choose a different vendor for each service, vendors design their services to integrate easily with one another. When relying on serverless architecture, your business can quickly get locked in with the same provider for all services. After all, AWS offers over 100 different cloud services, and while this is great for businesses, some organizations might not want to be locked into one vendor.
Your organization will have less control over security with serverless architectures. Typically, this is not a significant issue, but in some instances, it can put your data and organization at risk. For example, if multiple apps are being run on the same server with your app and it is improperly configured, your data could potentially be exposed. Service providers like AWS and others take great steps to ensure security is strong, but mistakes can happen, and control is out of your team’s hands.
Serverless architectures offer businesses a lot of flexibility and power. However, there are some challenges that should be considered before making an important decision like this. If you want to learn more about serverless architecture and the services available to your business, reach out to an experienced app development partner. We hope this post has answered the question of what is AWS serverless architecture and given your organization something to consider.