Cloud computing services today vary widely in how they are packaged and labeled. But lift the lid, and all cloud services tend to have the same basic cloud computing infrastructure. It's this common infrastructure that enables these services to deliver the characteristic benefits of cloud computing.
Clouds can be public or private and offer any number of IT capabilities "as a Service". Given this variety, just what does cloud mean in terms of infrastructure?
While cloud services may differ in implementation detail, they share these common cloud computing infrastructure elements:
A critical but often overlooked dimension of cloud architecture is the public Internet. In most cases, end users interface with cloud services through the Internet and consequently cloud service performance is susceptible to the inherent variability of the Internet. This is true even for private enterprise cloud services, if users are geographically dispersed or access the service through mobile devices.
At Akamai we help public and private cloud operators deliver high-performing cloud services through the Internet to end users connecting anywhere in the world, from any type of device. Our global content distribution and application acceleration platform spans more than 175,000 servers in over 100 countries, enabling service providers to extend their cloud network to within a single network hop of more than 90% of internet users worldwide. The result is a more reliable, more satisfying experience for cloud service users, boosting adoption rates and brand loyalty.