A few days ago, Dropbox announced to move its data – 500 Petabytes – out of AWS. What does this mean to the viability of public cloud?
From our point of view this is bold underlining for the viability and validity of the public cloud model. Yes, it is a drawback for AWS to loose such a big customer. But it also is the pure nature of success. Dropbox used AWS infrastructures to provide a SaaS. AWS helped Dropbox to focus on the most important things: usability, customer experience and sales instead of investing into high tech and data bunkers.
If Dropbox would not had this ease of delivery on the tech side, proven security and immediate global availability, who knows whether the service would have been accepted in the same way? Management focus would have to turn on technical issues which – in the case of using an IaaS provider – could be fully handed over to AWS.
Now while the service has a solid foundation, millions of customers and a clear understanding of its requirements, Akhil Gupta (VP infrastructure @ Dropbox) can specify what he needs as a solution. And yes, in such a scale it will not be possible to achieve much of economies of scale (eos) from third party anymore. Given you have a 500 petabyte storage requirement, it should be possible to negotiate “preferred conditions” by yourself.
So what is the take-home-message? IaaS is of great benefit when you are incubating new business models/services. It allows you to forget about technical details and to care about what is at the heart of your solution. Profit from the eos while building up your customers. When the business model has proven and you know how the wind blows, you still have plenty of time to focus on optimization of technical stuff.
Just make sure, you select the right service for your purpose! To learn more about the different IaaS offerings, visit the ASCAMSO platform or read our reports.