Azure Pros and Cons. Microsoft's Cloud-based Service
Microsoft Azure’s market share as of 2021 is 22% which means, it’s the second-best service provider for companies’ business operations day-in and day-out. Being the trusted cloud computing platform, Azure can be described as a set of integrated cloud services, including computing, networking, and storage. If you consider moving to this multi-services platform, make sure to go through Azure Pros and Cons first.
Things you should know about Azure
Azure is Microsoft's cloud service that caters to all your business needs. Microsoft Azure runs on the same infrastructure that powers Microsoft products like Xbox Live, Office 365, and Bing.
The cloud-based service offers an infrastructure as a service (IaaS) platform for building applications without managing your own servers or hardware. It also offers a platform as a service (PaaS) environment for deploying applications.
Microsoft Azure provides these services under one subscription, so you don't have to pay separately for each. Microsoft Azure allows you to spin up resources in minutes, pay only for your use, and scale as needed. It also provides an easy way for developers to build and host websites using Microsoft's scalable cloud technology and pay-as-you-go pricing model.
It gives you on-demand access to computing power, allowing you to scale your application as needed while paying only for what you use.
MS Azure includes virtual machines with Windows Server 2012 and Linux support built-in, managed through the Microsoft Management Console or PowerShell scripting.
Microsoft also provides a SQL database that allows users to seamlessly integrate their data into applications without running an instance of SQL server themselves locally.
Azure also provides a new application development framework for Microsoft called “azure mobile services,” which allows developers to quickly and easily create scalable backend data storage and service endpoints such as push notifications.
Microsoft has created an SDK that supports .NET, Node.js, PHP, or Java, so any of those languages can be used with the Azure platform. If you have finally made up your mind to tag along with their services, these pros and cons of azure are just for you.
What are the Azure pros for businesses?
Currently, 95% of the Fortune 500 companies have their business operated through Azure. The company also invests around $1 billion in security to protect customers’ data every year. If these facts are not enough to blow your mind, read on azure pros further.
1. Low initial investment
One of the advantages of Microsoft Azure is that companies can set-up and begin using their services without investing in extensive computer hardware and software. This allows small to medium businesses an opportunity to compete for business with larger corporations.
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Microsoft Azure has elasticity capabilities to automatically increase (scale-up) or decrease (scale down) computing resources as needed. This is particularly beneficial for businesses that do not anticipate the amount of web traffic they will receive or require additional storage for data.
With Microsoft Azure, companies can also increase the capacity of their services with near limitless scalability depending on their needs. This again is especially beneficial to companies who do not know the amount of web traffic they will receive or for companies that experience a large increase in business.
4. Major Azure Pros are Reliability, Cloud Storage Redundancy
Companies can store data and applications on Microsoft Azure's cloud platform, knowing their information will be safe and available if a natural disaster occurs. This means that even if one data center is inaccessible (due to an act of God), other facilities can provide access to their stored information.
5. Easy integration with existing services
Microsoft Azure's cloud platform is compatible with Microsoft Server and SQL Server and popular third-party API tools like Twillio API for Windows Azure Mobile Services and Xero API for Windows Azure. This allows businesses to easily integrate their current cloud-based or on-site services with Microsoft Azure.
6. Improved speed of information processing
In addition to processing more data faster, apps built on the Windows Azure platform are also faster because they're built on a fully distributed cache with built-in storage scalability. This ability adds to the pros of Azure Service in terms of smooth business operations.
7. Lower cost of ownership
Because Microsoft Azure reduces the need for companies to purchase their own server hardware, it also significantly decreases an organization's overall IT costs. This reduction is on top of any money saved through the above advantages of Microsoft Azure (elasticity and scalability).
8. Integration of web and mobile technologies
Azure's cloud platform includes features like cross-platform frameworks for building scalable cloud apps on Windows, Android, iOS, and HTML5 platforms to accommodate the growing number of businesses using web-based and mobile tools. There is also a set of Web Sites APIs that allows developers to deploy and scale their web applications on the Azure platform.
9. Improved customer service is one of the commendable pros of Azure
Integrating Microsoft Azure into a business' cloud-based system helps improve customer service through features like mobile services, which provide push notifications for mobile users. It also uses collaboration tools such as Windows Azure Active Directory, which helps employees share resources, support customers, and perform work more effectively.
Recently Experienced Azure Cons
The following are some of the cons of Microsoft Azure for business. There are no geographically dispersed data centers, limited information storage capabilities, no long-term contract for pricing discounts and penalties if you leave early, fewer services than comparable solutions, and less experience among developers. All the points are elaborated below for your better understanding.
1. Lack of Geographically Distributed Data Centers
Although Microsoft Azure now has data centers in the USA, Europe, and Asia, their current cloud platform does not have data centers in every country, which restricts companies that would like to use Microsoft Azure but are required by regulation to store their information locally.
2. Limited Information Storage Capabilities
While all of the advantages above help businesses increase flexibility and scalability for their cloud platforms, they also come at a cost. Microsoft has struggled to protect users' information and had to make significant changes to their data storage. The corporation also amended its protection policies after many customers' information was compromised due to a security failure.
3. Early Termination Fees are major Azure Cons
Although Microsoft Azure is significantly less expensive than many competitive cloud platforms, the only way they offer advantages like free trials or reduced rates is through signing customers up for a 12-month term.
4. Fewer Services than Competitive Products
Although Microsoft Azure is an open-source cloud platform, it has fewer services than its competitors, like Amazon Web Services, which have over 200 different services available for developers to use. In addition, the limited number of available services often requires a team of developers to set up, which can lead to higher costs for small organizations that do not have the resources or expertise.
5. Lack of Experience for Developers
Microsoft Azure has been on the market since 2010 and therefore lacks the experience of more established platforms like Amazon Web Services. Although Microsoft is one of the most popular companies globally, its experience in the cloud platform market is still relatively new. This problem is one of the considerable azure cons that leaves some customers in doubt and can make it difficult for the service to compete with other companies with more expertise and better services.
Final Comments on Azure Pros and Cons
Whether you're looking for a new cloud platform to invest in or are just curious about what Azure is all about. Azure pros and cons have some helpful information for everyone. You can assess this Microsoft's newest enterprise-grade IaaS solution and help you decide if it might be right for your business.