Public Cloud Wars Will Heat Up in 2017; Amazon and Google Battle Microsoft via Middleware Partnerships

C. Dunlap
C. Dunlap

Summary Bullets:

• Enterprises seeking greater infrastructure and data/application services efficiency are moving cloud-native and hybrid cloud application development to the public cloud.

• The next phase of cloud computing growth will be driven by containers, microservices, and Functions-as-a-Service, specifically those supporting mobile and IoT platform services.

Cloud-native and hybrid cloud application development is making its way to the public cloud as enterprises increasingly see Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud Platform (GCP) as a viable infrastructure and data/application services model. In the past week, AWS and GCP separately increased their app development arsenal by way of two key middleware and mobile middleware partnerships.

Red Hat is making the public cloud version of its platform services, OpenShift Dedicated app container service, available on GCP. The partnership provides Google with mature, enterprise-grade application platform services stemming from the JBoss portfolio, including FeedHenry mobile technology. It builds out a compelling portfolio for application development/deployment based on Red Hat’s container and Kubernetes orchestration technologies, alongside the various JBoss services. Developers can also more easily enhance applications via Google’s growing set of services, including data analytics, machine learning, compute, network, and storage. (Please see Red Hat OpenShift Dedicated Container Service Available on GCP; Is Azure Next?, December 8, 2016).

Meanwhile, Kony announced integration of its front-end tool, Visualizer, with AWS via pre-integrated support for the AWS Mobile SDK and built-in support for mobile services: Amazon Cognito, AWS Lambda, and Amazon DynamoDB. The move provides Amazon with more clout as it goes up against Microsoft Azure’s mobile and IoT services. Amazon is more likely to attract enterprises through Kony’s best-of-breed mobile app platform, which also includes MobileFabric. The backend integration technology serves as a bridge between enterprises’ legacy backends and IoT devices, enabled through API services including management throttling for controlling throughput and versioning. As the industry’s leading pure-play MEAP provider, Kony is heavily focused on expanding its mobile platform to include IoT apps, and has invested in prominent IoT protocols such as MQTT to expose APIs more easily.

Cloud computing in 2017 will be driven by such new app development architectures, including containers, microservices, and Functions-as-a-Service (aka serverless architecture—e.g., IBM OpenWhisk, AWS Lambda, and Microsoft Azure Functions). These more agile development and deployment architectures are well-suited to address new business initiatives around mobile, IoT, and mobilization of traditional enterprise application, and many such projects require new capabilities such as continuous integration, continuous delivery (CICD).

Mobile and IoT platform services are key in helping public cloud providers attract the broader audience of Web developers looking for omni-channel capabilities as part of front-end tools and solutions addressing the skill sets of those developers. Such tools will include more comprehensive and auto generated access to APIs, so developers can, for example, take advantage of the latest Apple or Google healthKit APIs.

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