AWS vs Azure vs Google. The battle for the cloud crown

AWS vs Azure vs Google, the three biggest cloud providers in the world. They all have a vast network of servers all over the world and many services that can cover most of the business’s needs. They provide IaaS and PaaS through interconnected services. If are just starting with the cloud technology, you will probably be confused about choosing between them. AWS vs Azure vs Google, which is better and why?

Let’s introduce them to you.

AWS vs Azure vs Google

Amazon Web Services – AWS

Amazon Web Services, as you guessed already, is a part of Amazon. It was launched in 2006. Amazon has far more time as the other two. It is already a well-developed platform that has plenty of services.

AWS showed their profit for the first time in 2015. They had 1.57 billion dollars of sales and 265 million operating income. Impressive results. The numbers are continually growing, and the revenues for 2017 were 17.46 billion dollars.

Microsoft Azure

Microsoft Azure was the response from Microsoft. The giant tech company introduced Azure in 2010, a few years after Amazon. Azure has growth to provide SaaS, IaaS and PaaS with more than 600 services! It bets that people are familiar with Microsoft ecosystem and it offers excellent integration with their software.

Google Cloud Platform – GCP

Strangely, Google was behind Amazon too. It stated in 2008. Google has been around with their cloud services for consumers, but with Google Cloud Platform, they want to get the businesses too. Just like the rest, they want to create a robust ecosystem with their Android, Chrome OS and APIs for machine learning.

Tables of services AWS vs Azure vs Google

Compute

AWS Azure GCP
PaaS Elastic Beanstalk Cloud Services App Engine Standard Environment

App Engine Flexible Environment

Deploy and managing virtual servers Elastin Compute Cloud (EC2) Virtual Machines

Virtual Machine Scale Sets

Compute Engine
Virtual private servers made easy Lightsail Virtual Machine Images
Support for Docker/Kubernetes containers EC2 Container Service (ECS)

Kubernetes (EKS)

Container Service

Container Service (AKS)

Kubernetes Engine

Container Engine

Integrate systems and run backend logic processes Lamda Functions

Event Grid

Web Jobs

Cloud Functions (Beta)
Run large-scale parallel and batch computing Batch Batch
Automatic scale instances Auto Scaling Virtual Machine Scale Sets

App Service Scale Capability (PaaS)

AutoScaling

Instance Groups
Instance families 7 4 4
Instance types 38 33 18

The main computing service of Amazon is EC2. It provides easy scaling within minutes. You can control it through APIs and auto scale depending on your needs. It works with both Linux and Windows.

Microsoft’s computing is simply known as Virtual Machine. Just like the AWS, it has a long list of instances for fast scaling like GPU, high-performance computing options and AI. It also supports Windows and Linux.

Google’s answer to the competition is Compute Engine. It is a newer service in comparison with the rest, and it has fewer sub-services. It has Windows and Linux support too.

Storage

AWS Azure GCP
Object storage service for use cases S3 Storage (Block Blob) Cloud Storage
Archive storage S3 Infrequent Access

Glacier

Data Archive

Storage (Cool)

Storage (Archive)

Nearline

Coldline

Hybrid storage Storage Gateway StorSimple Engyte Sync
Auto protection and disaster recovery Disaster Recovery Site Recovery
Bulk transfer Import/Export Disk

Snowball Edge

SnowMobile

Import/Export

Azure Data Box

Storage Transfer Service
Backup Object Storage

Cold Archive Storage

Storage Gateway

Backup

Database

AWS Azure GCP
Caching ElastiCache RedisCache CloudCDN
Block storage EBS Page Blobs Persistent Disks
Object Storage S3 Blobs and Files Google Cloud Storage Block
NoSql (indexed) DynamoDB Cosmos DB Cloud Datastore

Cloud Bigtable

NoSql (Key-value) DynamoDB

SimpleDB

Table Storage Cloud Datastore
Database Migration Database Migration Service Database Migration Service
Manage Relational Database-as-a-Service RDS SQL Database

Database for MySQL

Database for PostgreSQL

Google Cloud SQL

Cloud Spanner

Content Delivery

AWS Azure GCP
Load Balancing Elastic Load Balancing Load Balancer Application Gateway Cloud Load Balancing
Global CDN CloudFront Content Delivery Network Cloud Interconnect
DNS Route 53 Traffic Manager Azure DNS Google Cloud DNS
Cross-Premises Connectivity API Gateway VPN Gateway Cloud VPN
Virtual Networking Virtual Private Cloud Virtual Network Subnet
Dedicate, Private Network Connection Direct Connect Express Route

Management and Monitoring

AWS Azure GCP
Administration Application Discovery Service

System Manager

Personal Health Dashboard

Log Analytics

Operations Management Suite

Resource Health

Storage Explorer

Cloud Console
Billing Billing API Billing API Cloud Billing API
Cloud Advisor Capabilities Cloudwatch

X-Ray

Management Console

Portal

Monitor

Application Insights

Stackdriver Monitoring

CloudShell

Debugger

Trace

Error Reporting

Cloud Resources Management and Monitoring Trusted Advisor Advisor Cloud Platform Security

Security

AWS Azure GCP
Authentication and Authorization Identity and Access Management (IAM) Active Directory

Active Directory Premium

Cloud IAM

Cloud Identity-Aware Proxy

Protection with Data Encryption Key Management Service Storage Service Encryption
Firewall Web Application Firewall Application Gateway
Identity Management Cognito Active Directory B2C
Cloud Services with Protection Shield DDoS Protection Service

Pros and cons of AWS

+ Easy to scale and manage capacities depending on the needs of the users.

+ Relatively cheap storage in comparison with the competition.

+ Global reach. Perfect for international business.

+ AWS ecosystem. The services inside AWS are well connected to each other.

+ API support for easy integration.

– For some purposes, it can be more expensive in comparison with the competition.

– Confusing billing. It is hard to understand the bills.

– AWS is complicated. The learning curve is steep.

– It is a target to strong attacks. You can expect some downtime.

Pros and cons of Azure

+ Low downtime thanks to the extensive network of servers around the world

+ Security proven with many compliance certificates.

+ Easy scalability

+ Pay-as-you-go model for better IT budget management

– High data transfer rates. There are separate fees for incoming and for outgoing data. Watch out!

– IT Expertise. You or your team will need particular knowledge to be able to manage the ecosystem of Microsoft.

– Support. We don’t say it is bad, but it is hard to explain a cloud problem over an email. The communication is slow. You will probably need IT professionals for managing the services.

– Bet on just one company. Many prefer to use just a single provider, but this can be dangerous. The company might change the prices or bankrupt, and this can lead to many problems for your business.

Pros and cons of GCP

+ Fastest I/O

+ The sustained use option of Google doesn’t require an upfront payment and is not limited to the utilization of a particular instance like Amazon’s Reserved Instances (RI)

+ Google is good at the data analytics and storage

+ Good integration with other Google services.

+ Browser based ssh console

– The actual control over the VMs is limited because of Google’s propriety technologies.

– Less programming languages in comparison with AWS and Azure.

– Hard exit if you want to leave the platform.

AWS vs Azure vs Google, conclusion

There is no clear answer. It depends a lot on how big is your company and what type of cloud services do you need. If you have a huge business and you need as much power as you can get, AWS can be your solution. If you are very attached to the Microsoft ecosystem, then Azure can be your choice. For small startups, Google Cloud can be a good solution because of its more attractive price.

You should think about your business needs first. You could find attractive offers from other companies too, especially if you have a very particular market in mind. It is convenient.

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