What Is Cloud-Native Software Development?

22 Feb, 2023
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Cloud-native software development is the way to develop or modernize applications to make them cost-effective, secure, and performant, by making optimal use of the cloud.    

Cloud-native software development aims to replace traditional architectures for on-premise use with cloud components to keep costs manageable. As an added benefit, this way of building and deploying software opens doors to features exclusive to the cloud, such as AI.  

Cloud-native software development emerged to maximize cloud benefits. You don’t want new technology to drain you financially,” says Marcel de Vries, CEO of Xpirit. “To give you an example, suppose a piece of software is created based on a datacenter’s 100% availability assumption. When it then has to run in a cloud setup, that same availability assumption is almost impossible (or will run you up quite the bill because, instead, the cloud offers failovers). For this same software to function smoothly in the cloud, you’ll have to modify it. Doing so is referred to as cloud-native software development.

Today, a mere 20-30% of companies across the globe are using the cloud. Gartner predicts that five years from now, that will be 80%. As a result, cloud-native software development will only (continue to) gain momentum.     


Cloud-Native Software Development in Practice 

First embraced by ‘the unicorns’, cloud-native software development is now wildly trending because it promises to reduce cloud spend and maximize the benefits of the cloud. 

Cloud-native software development starts with understanding the bigger picture — how does working in the cloud differ from running on a server in your data center? After that, it’s time to explore popular cloud-native concepts like anything ‘as-a-service’, FinOps, containerization, sandboxing, Microservices, and CI/CD. Finally, you’ll be checking everything you do for cost efficiency. For example, where in a traditional setup, you could max out the available storage, you’ll be paying per hour or terabyte in the cloud. So, you’ll need to give what you store where, why, how, and for how long some serious thought.  

There will be people in your organization who are hesitant to agree on moving to the cloud because they are convinced it’s more expensive than their current setup. This could be true if you are looking at a straightforward lift and shift. That’s why it’s important to assess workloads and modify and optimize software for the new environment,” says De Vries.  


Do You Want to Become a Real Cloud Business? 

Cloud-native development has the potential to reduce your IT spend, but it also offers you high availability, scalability, and speed. If you know what you’re doing, the cloud is a safe place for your software and your data. 

But, what’s truly awesome about cloud-native software development is that it turns companies into real cloud businesses because it totally transforms how they work. “Being able to switch on 10,000 machines at once and turn them off ten minutes later is a new architectural principle,” says De Vries. “What used to take a week due to hardware limitations can now be done in a few hours. This is a huge shift for any company. But, if executed well, the benefits are endless!”

“When done well, developing in a cloud-native fashion will help you unlock new business models."



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