Why application development is better in the cloud

David Linthicum| Infoworld

InfoWorld’s own Paul Krill has the skinny around a recent Evans Data survey that found developers are split on the benefits of building in the cloud. This is an important data point: One of the true “killer” use cases for cloud computing is app dev and test. The payback from using public cloud-based assets to build, test, and deploy applications is already compelling, but it will become immense in the near future.

The results of the Evans Data Cloud Development Survey, conducted in December and released this month, found that cloud platforms reduce overall development time by an average of 11.6 percent. This is largely due to the cloud platform’s ability to streamline the development process, including the ability to quickly get the development assets online. Moreover, cloud platforms provide the ability to collaborate on development efforts, which is also a benefit.

However, about 10 percent of developers cited no time savings in using cloud-based development environments. An equal amount said they had experienced more than 30 percent in time savings, and 38 percent cited savings in the 11 to 20 percent range.

Cloud-based development platforms in PaaS and IaaS public clouds — such as Google, Amazon Web Services, Microsoft, and Salesforce.com — are really in their awkward teenage years. But they show cost savings and better efficiencies. Most developers are surprised when they review the metrics.

Right now, there are two “killer” use cases for cloud computing: big data and app dev and test. If you don’t have a program in place to at least explore the value of this technology, you should get one going right now. Here are the benefits:

  • The ability to self-provision development and testing environments (aka devops), so you can get moving on application builds without having to wait for hardware and software to show up in the data center
  • The ability to quickly get applications into production and to scale those applications as required
  • The ability to collaborate with other developers, architects, and designers on the development of the application

The value is very apparent, the technology is solid, and the opportunity is clear. Are you in?


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