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The State of Cloud-Native SaaS for Software Development

Thanks to the surge of remote work - cloud adoption is always high compared to the first half of 2019. Although the cloud has become one of the most common approaches to networking for organizations with the evolution in technology, the reliance on legacy applications is no longer the same.

The promise of cloud computing and SaaS solutions have brought new hope for never-ending possibilities with numerous innovative scopes. However, it has also created many doubts for us. In general, cloud-based apps can be split into two major sections - cloud-native and cloud-enabled.

In today's blog, we will discover more about the term cloud-native and its landscape while also identifying the advantages and challenges.

Understanding Cloud-native Development and SaaS

To understand the right definition of cloud-native SaaS, we have outlined the significance of two important technical terms, such as - Software as a Service (SaaS), and cloud-native development.

What is Cloud-Native Development?

Cloud-native has become the modern approach to creating and deploying software applications with features like - flexibility, scalability, and resilience of cloud computing. In addition, it has all the necessary tools and techniques used by the software developers to develop applications for the public cloud.

As said by the Cloud-native Computing Foundation (CNCF), cloud-native technology enables companies to create and run apps in private, hybrid, and public clouds. The features that best illustrate this approach are - immutable infrastructure, containers, microservices, declarative application programming interfaces (APIs), and service meshes.

The modern scenario of complex apps - with customers expecting a continuous, seamless innovation with utter responsiveness - needs business processes to be incredibly flexible and strategic. The cloud-native solution is here to help businesses to move faster than ever while also being agile.

In general, cloud-native solutions enable modern software and application development utilizing technologies like server less functions, APIs, Kubernetes, Docker, and Kafka. Leading cloud vendors provide the latest solutions to reduce operational tasks and build applications faster for developers. Overall, cloud-native solutions give developers an upper hand by delivering a comprehensive platform that helps build, deploy, and handle applications such as microservices and server less functions.

What is Software as a Service (SaaS)?

Software as a Service (SaaS) refers to a software licensing and delivery model that offers centrally hosted software licensed on a subscription basis for users. In general, SaaS users connect to the software through a browser over the internet. Modern SaaS comes with the benefits of deployment, management and configuration.

Then what is Cloud-native SaaS?

The term 'cloud-native SaaS' means that SaaS is created, designed, and implemented as cloud-native applications (aka cloud-native SaaS). They consist of multiple independent services and are built utilizing composable architecture.

Four Business Benefits of Cloud-native SaaS

The utilization of cloud-based technology and tools have become prevalent within mid-market companies. But why the move? Several business benefits are driving the rapid adaptation of cloud technology. There is no need to handle any software or manage scaling during peak periods with cloud-native SaaS. Apart from this, there are plenty of benefits offered by cloud-native SaaS solutions:

Scalability - Scalability in the cloud refers to managing increased or decreased demands on the system. It happens in two ways - horizontal (scaling in or out) and vertical scaling (scaling up or down). For cloud-native SaaS, horizontal scaling works exceptionally well. It helps keep all the data and functionality in containerized microservices, resulting in scaling the parts of the application.

Customer-centric - Cloud-native SaaS is the answer to customer-focused as it is becoming the industry norm. For instance, organizations lacking a robust customer-centric business model can benefit from implementing cloud-native solutions to make consistent progress and maintain an edge over competitors. In addition, there is a range of competitive advantages, including customer intelligence, campaign management, several mobile-first applications, eCommerce, and many more.

Speed and Flexibility - Setting up cloud-native solutions is quick as it has custom-made services and architecture for new systems. In addition, devOps and agile - two cloud development methods- can facilitate cloud projects forward faster while fixing bottlenecks in a lesser amount of time. Plus, the cloud initiates rapid movements in business by offering virtually unlimited capacity.

Automation - For a cloud-native SaaS solution, automation is one of the core benefits. This allows creating the application deployment infrastructure and deploying it in a more automated and organized approach. In addition to that, this enables several labor-intensive tasks and processes to be automated while freeing up IT time, on-premises infrastructure, and budget.

The Advantages of Cloud-Native Vs. On-Premises Architectures

Cloud-native development needs a very different architecture than legacy enterprise applications, which typically run in an on-premises data center. Here are some crucial differences and the advantages cloud-native brings over traditional app dev models.

Updatability - On-premises apps are generally updated once or twice in a year utilizing the waterfall methodology, whereas cloud-native apps are created to be regularly updatable. Cloud-native solution's updatability offers a boost for engineering teams to dedicate their time and effort to delivering brand-new features more frequently than before.

Multitenancy - Any cloud-native app will have no issue working in a virtual space and sharing resources with other apps utilizing the multitenant model. This clearly brings a productive boost to the engineering teams.

Languages - In general, on-premises applications tend to be written in traditional languages such as enterprise Java, C++, and C#. However, cloud-native apps are written in a web-focused language, for instance - CSS, .NET, Ruby, Node.js, PHP, HTML, and Python. Working with the latest platforms and languages is a boon when it comes to having the best team to work at your company.

Stateless - All the cloud-native apps are stateless, meaning that they don't carry the saved data from previous sessions. This feature enables scaling easily across different servers while using less storage and avoiding the vendor lock-in by not being affixed to one particular server.

Why Cloud-native Will Win Over the SaaS Landscape

While it is possible to transfer your data operations and traditional apps to the cloud, several SaaS vendors have received first-mover benefits from embracing a cloud-native approach. Here's why the cloud-native approach will take over the SaaS world -

Separation Of Computing And Storage Improves Both

At any organization's data center, the servers they purchase typically have direct-attached storage (DAS) that can be used to store temporary files, images, documents, and other miscellaneous information.

However, after entering the SaaS area in the cloud, it is risky to depend on this approach as the needs may change and it require a different approach to fulfill data storage needs. So instead, the cloud allows to use AWS S3 or ADLS - the object storage services that can be bought, streamlined, and handled separately without any computing requirement. This entire separation will help companies to ignore any major crisis or mishaps.

Design For Cloud Object Storage

When it comes to the issue of storage, a cloud-focused design decision has many advantages, such as S3 or ADLS. Additionally, cloud providers will strive to innovate and enhance their storage solutions. Developers who track and adapt to these innovations will receive every benefit over other competitors.

For instance, Amazon recently added a new feature - read-after-write consistency. Having this solution built into storage states that paying for any SQL query engine isn't required for particular use cases.

Make It Foolproof

SaaS organizations are expected to be good at producing foolproof workflows and increasing the effectiveness of users. Companies that are ready to adopt a cloud-native approach, can reap the rewards of the immediacy, automation, and simplification that cloud solutions offer.

SaaS vendors are focused on providing constant provisioning, a “push-button” user experience for complex business or IT functions, and a set-it-and-forget-it configuration to make things easier to flow. The other benefit of being foolproof is to allow users to be more efficient by incorporating better automation, built-in predictive intelligence, or machine learning to ensure optimization is achieved properly.

Elasticity Provides A Cost Advantage

Cloud-native solutions usually operate on a pay-as-you-go method with no massive investment, an added advantage. Additionally, your company needs to pay for an annual subscription to use it as a service which means it can be seen as an operating expenditure (which most companies prefer). In terms of importance, the “lower overall costs” is the second biggest cloud-native SaaS adoption driver.

Many traditional systems need a certain maintenance fee: backup, updates, and security. This subscription-based pricing model refers to having unlimited users and access, flexible support and services, and maintenance and upgrades. This means it has no hidden fees and a hassle-free experience.

Bringing It All Together

Being a part of MACH tech, Cloud-native SaaS is continuously updated and scaled to fit your business needs. This means no more upgrades. This innovative technology can help the apps run in a highly distributed manner while maintaining independence and allocating resources based on the needs. It has become one of the best ways to strengthen an organization's business strategy and value, because they can deliver a consistent experience across private, public, and hybrid clouds.

Understanding more about cloud-native offerings is crucial for deciding if you need it for your long-term growth. Connect with us today to find out more about how and why you should consider cloud-native solutions.

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