The Cloud Vs. Traditional Data Centers, What’s the Difference?

There are so many options nowadays: food options, transportation options, education/work options, and much more! On a daily basis, we are bombarded with ads and media pulling us every which way. It makes the decision-making process a million times more difficult, leaving us to wonder if we are making the best decision. Technology is no exception.

Whether you are running a business or using it for personal purposes, you may be wondering where you should store your data. Well, you have a few options to choose from: the cloud, a data center, or a hybrid solution. I know, I know! All of these options are enough to drive someone crazy. But, don’t worry. Once you understand the differences, you will have a better understanding of what will work the best for your business and needs. 

Let’s first compare the cloud and a data center. The main difference between a cloud and a data center is that a data center refers to on-premise hardware and infrastructure while the cloud refers to off-premise computing. The cloud stores your data in the public cloud while a data center stores your data on hardware. A hybrid solution is a hybrid of the cloud and a data center. It’s a situation where your data is stored on both platforms, for different reasons. You may still be confused about these options, so let’s check out their benefits. 

Benefits of a data center 

Owning an in-house data center or having hardware in a provider’s data center is often a good solution, but it depends on your needs. Maintaining an in-house data center can get pretty expensive, as well as time-consuming if you don’t know what you’re doing. Data centers are true powerhouses of the modern technical world! They are incredibly secure, efficient, and reliable. They can also be a very cost-effective option. If you have hardware in a local provider’s data center, you don’t have to worry about a thing! Most, if not all, data centers have staff in the buildings 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and 365 days a year if you were to call or walk-in with a question. You also have access to your hardware and the opportunity to build relationships with that local company. To operate correctly, businesses require high levels of performance, security, capacity, storage, and much more. It’s a great route to go if you like the idea of having physical hardware!

Benefits of the cloud 

Many businesses have turned to the cloud (not all, but many)! According to a recent study from International Data Group, nearly 69% of businesses are using cloud technology and 18% say they plan to implement cloud computing solutions at some point. It is very much a growing trend among businesses to ditch the hardware and jump on the cloud. Large companies with limited budgets and startup businesses with a lack of resources may find that the cloud is a good option because it provides immediate capacity without the need for an upfront investment. Other organizations find that the cloud is awesome for disaster recovery purposes. Another benefit of the cloud is its ability to scale or add and reduce capacity as needed. Most cloud computing services run on a pay-as-you-go system, saving you money in time and costs. The cloud also allows for businesses to have mobility and access to corporate data on-the-go and reliable security! There are many benefits of the cloud that will benefit your business in many ways. 

If you are unsure about what you need, compare and contrast the two based on the needs of your organization. Overall, your flexibility, workload, and security needs will dictate whether a data center or the cloud is the best fit for your organization.