Cloud News & Insights

Small Versus Big Cloud Service Provider

Big businessman holding small businessman on his palm

This is a perennial problem while deciding on a cloud service provider. In the first instance migrating from a traditional server platform to the cloud is by itself a tough decision. Who and why are questions which continue to dominate our minds, I mean website owners, when finally coming to a decision. Here are some issues which you need to consider while taking such a big decision.

The main big players

Though there are many big players, I consider Amazon services, Google platform and Microsoft Azure platform as the main contenders for the top slot. These cloud service providers are established, reliable and dependable. I may mention here that even these providers have had outrages which have disrupted services. One of the well-known names provides excellent service but is tardy. This may be because their infrastructure may be under tremendous pressure – this is my personal opinion.

Microsoft Azure is a perfect platform for those who want to be tied to Microsoft. No problems here. Microsoft has stitched together all its software and services nicely and seamlessly. I have not worked with Azure myself, but I understand that it’s good. If you are planning to migrate to an open source strategy in future (I am a fan of open source) you would find it tough if you are presently with Azure. Otherwise, a diehard Microsoft company may well go with Azure and get fulfillment.

The Amazon bundle is a lot more complicated. They offer everything under the sun and more. Since they are bulk suppliers, their costs may be competitive. Amazon Web Services (AWS) consists of several cloud offerings. They have an extensive database and you will find an answer to most of your queries here. The only issue which you need to consider is whether you need personalized guidance while setting up your cloud infrastructure.

The small cloud players

The word “small” is rather comparative. When I say small, I mean smaller than the big players. Cloud service providers who might be considered small may actually have extensive infrastructure and ability to support every conceivable service. The only differentiators here are cost and personalized service. Small players may look as if they are costlier and this may prompt users to go with big players. I would consider this to be short-sighted. If you consider the cost of maintaining a full-time server administrator, the scale will surely tilt towards the small guys.

Coming to the personalized part, small players will always be better. You don’t have to face an automated help wall every time you face a problem. This can be an extremely frustrating experience and I am speaking from personal experience. Small cloud infrastructure providers will always hold your hand in case you face a crisis. You can buy services of an expert on a pay-as-you-need basis. You don’t need   permanent technical staff to maintain your cloud infrastructure.  These factors are a tremendous advantage and one realizes this only when you are in a crisis. I would suggest that you try and avoid such an eventuality where you are required to run from pillar to post to get your cloud infrastructure up and running.


From my personal viewpoint, a small cloud infrastructure provider is a better option. As I have mentioned earlier small doesn’t mean ‘small’. It only means smaller than the big players.

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About the Guest Author:

Sankarambadi SrinivasanSankarambadi Srinivasan, ‘Srini’, is a maverick writer, technopreneur, geek and online marketing enthusiast rolled into one. He began his career as a Naval weapon specialist. Later, he sold his maiden venture and became head of an offshore Database administration company in Mumbai. He moved on as Chief Technology Officer of one of the largest online entities, where he led consolidation of 300 online servers and introduced several Web 2.0 initiatives. He holds a Master’s degree in Electronics and Telecommunication.

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