Once upon a time, compiling a cloud computing cost comparison was difficult. Now it is practically impossible. Whereas previously, you could select instances with similar configurations from the three major cloud service providers and line them up against each other, now you have Reserved Instances (AWS), Reserved VM Instances (Azure) and Committed Use Discounts (Google) influencing the calculations. There are also other, cheaper cloud service providers gaining traction in the market.
Furthermore, whereas an instance vs. instance cloud computing cost comparison was the most meaningful way to assess pricing options, we now have a rapid adoption of container technology and businesses adopting multi-cloud strategies. With the ongoing circle of price reductions, plus the changing way in which businesses address cloud cost challenges, there is an argument to suggest a cloud computing cost comparison is no longer relevant in today´s cloud computing environment.
Because of the rapidly changing environment, cloud computing cost comparison tools can help find the cheapest option at the time of deployment. The cheapest option does not necessarily mean the best option; and, as part of a cloud computing cost comparison, businesses also need to take factors such as support, security, disaster recovery and latency into account. Cloud computing cost comparison tools do not adequately cover all of these areas.
Some other types of cloud management tools are worth the effort - particularly those that help businesses rightsize their resources and automate governance in order to maintain cloud cost optimization. Whereas cloud computing cost comparison tools may cost businesses more than they can save, cloud computing management tools frequently return a positive and immediate ROI. They are certainly worth investigating due to their ability to evolve as cloud computing environments change.
Various studies have suggested 2018 will be the year in which cloud service providers will standardize their pricing plans in order to increase flexibility and portability. This argument is supported by research indicating few enterprises are taking full advantage of the benefits of cloud computing due to the growing complexity of cloud products and their pricing structures. Some cloud service providers have listened, and already announced new pricing models more in line with Amazon Web Services.
According to the “Stratecast Predictions 2018 Report” produced by research firm Frost & Sullivan, the complexity of cloud products and their pricing structures “has given rise to a new market of “service brokers” that use technology and services to help businesses compare, select, optimize, and manage workloads across multiple cloud providers. The report predicts, “In 2018, leading cloud providers will do their part to address this challenge by consolidating and simplifying their own pricing tiers to enable users to better predict and compare costs.”
If the prediction comes true, a cloud pricing comparison for 2018 would certainly be easier. However, we do not recommend holding your breath while waiting for a reduction in cloud pricing complexity. Should the rapid adoption of container technology and the rate at which businesses adopt multi-cloud and hybrid strategies continue, compiling a cloud computing cost comparison in 2018 will surely become more complex - without accounting for other, cheaper cloud service providers adding to the complexity.
Source: Frost & Sullivan Report