Multi-Cloud for IoT
Multi-cloud for web apps is a common strategy adopted by enterprises. Should the same strategy be taken up by those creating IoT applications? Read on for some insight.
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It is clear that organizations are adopting a multi-cloud strategy for their public cloud hosting providers. Industry analyst reports indicate 60-86 percent of organizations are adopting or plan to adopt a multi-cloud strategy. Organizations are using multiple cloud providers to avoid vendor lock-in, ensure price competition, comply with regulatory requirements, and optimize the use of best services available. For more insight, Canonical has a comprehensive white paper on the future of multi-cloud.
For organizations selecting an IoT platform provider, the ability to host an IoT platform in a multi-cloud environment should be a key consideration. There are a number of compelling IoT use cases that drive the need for multi-cloud:
- Many IoT solutions need to be hosted on-premise so there is close proximity to the devices. Security, performance, and reliability are some of the key driving factors for on-premise deployments. For example, an oil rig with an unreliable network connection will require an IoT platform to run locally to avoid disruption due to connectivity issues. A private cloud on-premise deployment is often connected with services running on a public cloud for doing high-level analysis or planning.
- IoT solutions that are deployed in different geographical regions might require different public cloud providers. For instance, an IoT solution deployed in Asia, Europe, and NA might be required to use local cloud providers for data privacy regulations.
- IoT solutions often need to integrate and connect with existing enterprise and operational systems. These existing systems may already exist on public clouds or in private data center. Having the option to deploy IoT platform services on existing service providers makes it easier to manage the total solution.
- For IoT platform vendors, offering a multi-cloud strategy allows the vendor to be more responsive to customer and regional requirements.
It shouldn't be a big surprise that the cloud providers don't offer their IoT platform services on other cloud platforms. Microsoft, AWS, Google, and IBM don't provide much flexibility in their deployment options. They all have some form of private cloud or edge offering that connects to their cloud. However, the IoT services from these cloud providers are definitely locking you into the underlining cloud platform. If you are looking for a multi-cloud IoT platform solution, these vendors don't have much to offer.
IoT Platform Vendors
Some of the other IoT platform vendors that are taking a multi-cloud approach.
Clearblade appears to have one of the most comprehensive multi-cloud offerings with their support for on-prem, any cloud provider, and edge deployments. For Clearblade, the supported cloud providers include AWS, Google, IBM, Micosoft Azure, and Oracle.
PTC Thingworx has traditionally been an on-prem solution, but they have recently announced Micorsoft Azure as their 'preferred cloud platform for manufacturing customers.'
Bosch IoT Suite allows customers to install their different IoT services on a variety of cloud providers, including AWS, MS Azure, IBM, SAP Leonardo, and Bosch's own managed cloud service. They also have an on-prem version.
Siemens Mindsphere is built on top of Cloud Foundry and can be deployed on AWS and MS Azure. You can also run Mindsphere on-prem with a self-hosted version of Cloud Foundry.
GE Predix allows you to deploy on-prem and a public cloud managed by GE. In July, GE announced a partnership with Microsoft to ' to standardize its Predix solutions on Microsoft Azure '
Hitachi Lumada allows you to deploy to AWS, Azure, and on-prem.
A number of companies don't seem to have strong multi-cloud offerings, including Software AG's Cumulocity, SAP Leonardo, or C3 IoT. My guess is this will change over time.
Published at DZone with permission of Ian Skerrett, DZone MVB. See the original article here.
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