The Cloud War: AWS Vs Azure Vs Google Cloud Services

The more we travel in time, towards future, cloud computing keeps on luring us with its mysterious beckoning. By now, we all know that cloud computing is referred to the delivery of computing services, namely servers, storage, databases, networking, software, analytics, etc., over the internet.

In today’s digital era, cloud computing is everywhere. You are probably using the cloud right now, even if you don’t realize it. The moment you use an online service to write a text, send an email, edit documents, play games, watch movies, share pictures or store files you are establishing your cloud footprint. And yes, it is the cloud computing services that is making it all possible behind the scenes.

As cloud computing continues to rock the IT world, the comparison among the public cloud computing solutions has become a point of discussion for specialists and business owners alike. There are three different ways to deploy cloud computing resources (about which we will discuss in a different article).

They are:

  • Public cloud
  • Private cloud
  • Hybrid cloud

In this blog, our focus will remain on the public cloud services providers. In the public cloud domain, there are three major players, namely Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud Platform. Each of them offers slightly different services to the other. However, they also overlap in several areas.

One of the biggest debate in cloud circles today is the AWS vs Azure vs Google Cloud comparison. In this article, we will flow with the popular AWS vs Azure vs Google Cloud Services debate and compare the three leading cloud computing services.

However, before we dig deep into the AWS vs Azure vs Google Cloud Computing Services battle, let’s have a look at different types of public cloud services.

Types of Cloud Services

Public cloud services are broadly classified into three major categories –

Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) – IaaS enables you to rent IT infrastructure, i.e. servers and virtual machines (VMs), operating systems, networks, storage, from a cloud provider on a pay-as-you-go basis.

Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) – PaaS cloud computing services supply on-demand environments for developing, testing, delivering and managing software applications.

Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) – SaaS enables the delivery of software applications over the Internet, on demand and on a subscription basis.

Cloud computing services vary depending on the provider. However, all the public cloud vendors make the above services available over the internet for an ongoing usage fee.

Okay, let’s wage the war now.

AWS vs Azure vs Google Cloud: Compute

AWS

In the compute category, Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) is the primary offering of AWS. EC2 allows you to choose from a range of 40 virtual server instance sizes from low-cost instances to high-end memory, storage or GPU optimized products, offering up to 128 ‘vCPU’s and a memory of 2TB. However, the pricing for EC2 can get very intricate.

Amazon also provides a sumptuous array of PaaS services. With its PaaS compute solution, Elastic Beanstalk, used for running web applications written in JavaScript, Java, PHP, Python, .NET, Ruby, and Go, AWS can scale on request or based on certain runtime thresholds like CPU usage.

AWS leverages Lambda to run discrete compute tasks. AWS also presents persistent disk options via Elastic Block Store and offers a variety of SSD and HDD flavors.

Microsoft Azure

Powered by virtual machines, Azure’s compute offering presents 40 instance sizes offering up to 20 cores and 140GB of memory. Virtual machine auto scaling, supported by Microsoft Azure, can also scale VMS in response to metrics reported through the Azure diagnostic extension.

Azure supports local and persistent disks, with VHDs being stored in Storage page blobs. Microsoft Azure also offers SSDs as premium storage options. Azure’s Container Service indulges support for both Docker Swarm and Mesosphere DC/OS orchestration engines to run docker containers.

Microsoft is the maiden public cloud service provider to offer a fully fledged cloud microservice platform in Service Fabric. Being a strong contender for the PaaS offerings crown, Azure’s App Service platform offers a fully managed environment for running Java, .NET, PHP, and Node.JS applications.

Google Cloud Services

The compute realm of Google Cloud Services is based on virtual machines. Google’s Compute Engine provides a varied range of virtual machine options along with a number of pre-defined virtual server instances which allows you to choose between 1 and 32 ‘vCPU’/cores and up to 6.5GB of RAM per vCPU. Similar to Azure, Google Cloud platform also supports auto scaling with integration into Slackdriver.

Docker containers can be run using Google Container Engine that is based on Kubernetes. Unlike AWS and Azure that split out their services into different products, Google cloud platform comes with App Engine, comprising a bundle of managed application services, which offers a complete platform of running managed application written in Java, Node.js, PHP, and Ruby.

Service Provider
Instance Families
Instances Types
Regions
Zones
Amazon Web Services 7 38 Yes Yes
Microsoft Azure 4 33 Yes  
Google Cloud Platform 4 18 Yes Yes

AWS vs Azure vs Google Cloud: Networking

AWS

AWS deploys core networking services through Virtual Private Cloud (VPC), which represents a single network with dedicated IP range consisting of EC2 instances and other network resources. VPCs allow users to group Virtual Machines into isolated networks in the cloud. AWS permits up to 5 VPCs per region with an option to increase the limit on request.

Microsoft Azure

Azure offers two different models for deploying network services, namely Resource Manager and Classic, with the previous being recommended for most scenarios. Azure enables building networks via Azure Virtual Networks (VNets) which includes creating networks within Azure cloud to host virtual machines, virtual appliances, and PaaS offerings.

Google Cloud Services

Cloud Virtual Network is Google’s approach to networking in the cloud. Cloud Virtual Networks can accommodate up to 7000 virtual machine instances.

Unlike AWS and Azure, Google’s Cloud Virtual Networks are capable of encompassing resources deployed across multiple regions, reducing the need for complex VPN and network peering configuration.

Service Provider
Virtual network
Hybrid Cloud
Public IP
DNS
Firewall/ACL
Amazon Web Services VPC Yes Yes Route 53 Yes
Microsoft Azure VNet Yes Yes   Yes
Google Cloud Platform subnet   Yes   Yes

AWS vs Azure vs Google Cloud: Storage

AWS

AWS provides temporary storage that starts working once an instance is started and stops when the instance is terminated. AWS also provides Block Storage, equivalent to hard disks, which can either be attached to any instance or kept separate.

AWS also offers native cloud object storage solution, S3, that comes with high availability and automatic replication across regions.

Microsoft Azure

Azure utilizes temporary storage and Page Blobs for VM-based volumes. Microsoft’s Block Storage option, i.e. the Page Blobs and Files act similar to S3 in AWS and serve as Object Storage units.

Azure provides two classes of storage, Hot and Cool, classified based on their price. Cool comes at a lower storage cost, in comparison to Hot, but incurs additional read and write costs.

Google Cloud Services

Google Cloud Platform also offers both temporary storage and persistent storage disks. Google Cloud Storage services serve the purpose of object storage for the Google Cloud Platform

Object storage services of Google Cloud are categorized as Standard, Durable Reduced Availability and Nearline storage classes with Durable Reduced Availability being the cheapest choice for data.

AWS vs Azure vs Google Cloud: Databases

AWS

AWS works seamlessly with relational as well as NoSQL databases. AWS also supports Big Data. The core analytics offering of AWS is Elastic MapReduce (EMR), a managed Hadoop, Spark, and Presto solution, which helps setting up an underlying EC2 cluster and provides integration with a number of AWS services.

Microsoft Azure

Just like AWS, Azure supports both relational and NoSQL databases, as well as Big Data, through Windows Azure Table and HDInsight. Azure offers a number of NoSQL options including DocumentDB, Azure’s flagship high-performance document database.

Azure also provides a suite of analytical products called Cortana Intelligence that comes with Hadoop, HBase, Spark or Storm.

Google Cloud Services

Google Cloud Platform supports relational databases through Google Cloud SQL while its NoSQL option is Google’s general purpose document database, Cloud Datastore.

Google Cloud Platform’s support for Big Data and Analytics is backed by Cloud Dataproc, a fully managed Hadoop and Spark offering. Being the quickest of the three providers, Google boasts of a 90 second lead time to start or scale Cloud Dataproc clusters.

AWS vs Azure vs Google Cloud: Pricing

AWS

Customers using AWS are charged by rounding up the number of hours used. It allows customers to buy instances using any one of the following models:

On Demand – pay for what you use without any upfront cost

Reserved – reserve instances for 1 or 3 years with an upfront cost based on the utilization

Spot – bid for the available extra capacity

Microsoft Azure

Azure lets customers use its services on demand. If you are using Azure, you will be charged by rounding up the number of minutes used. Azure also provide short-term commitment opportunities with discounts.

Google Cloud Services

Google charges its users for instances by rounding up the number of minutes used, with a minimum of 10 minutes. Google Cloud Services also offers a sustained-use pricing structure that automatically discounts the on-demand baseline hourly rate when a particular instance is used for a longer period in a month.

Service Provider

Pricing

Model

Amazon Web Services Per hour; rounded up On demand, reserved, spot
Microsoft Azure Per minute; rounded up commitments (prepaid or monthly) On demand, short-term commitments

(prepaid or monthly)

Google Cloud Platform Per minute; rounded up (minimum 10 minutes) On demand, sustained use

So, What to Choose Now?

In this article, we have tried to throw some light on the AWS vs Azure vs Google Cloud debate. But, whatever the comparisons may be, finding the apt public cloud provider means researching what one really needs and what that provider has to offer.

One conclusion that comes out of the AWS vs Azure vs Google Cloud services battle is that the customers are going to win big as each public cloud service provider continue to woo them with regular price cuts and expanded offerings.

3 thoughts on “The Cloud War: AWS Vs Azure Vs Google Cloud Services

  1. Hi, We are TIB Academy, we are Best In AWS Training In Whole Bangalore. we sincerely liked your Post . Do Please let us know if You have any Doubt on any Program Please Let Us Know We will Solve it

  2. AWS,Azure and Google Cloud Services are among the top leaders for the cloud services in the market. That was really good comparison between each one of these.

  3. Working with Google Cloud will bring all your work together so choose your cloud platform wisely.

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