September 7, 2020

Modernization with cloud-based application development platforms

Worldwide IT spending has been substantial in the last few decades. While these legacy systems are robust, the challenge is in maintaining them and making them relevant to evolving business environments. Especially in 2020, where the priority of investment in technology is more focused on cost optimization and operations. In such times, how do you modernize and extend the capabilities of existing legacy systems?

How do you transform IT infrastructure, cost effectively?

The technology modernization journey is one that demands agility, mobility, and scalability. Given these primary business drivers and with initiatives driven by growth and transformation, there is an increase in IT spending, especially on public cloud services. The revenues from worldwide public cloud services market according to IDC totalled $233.4 billion in 2019, and the IT spending on cloud infrastructure is forecasted by Gartner to grow by 19% in 2020. What makes investment in cloud services promising is that it offers cost optimization, operational resilience and business agility.

The public cloud services market includes Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS), and Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS). Cloud application development and deployment services is a sub segment of this market, referred to as Application Platform-as-a-Service (aPaaS).


The Potential of Cloud Application Development Platforms

A promising proposition in the technology modernization journey

Let's take a look at the core advantages of cloud application development platforms and how they offer cost optimization, collaboration, flexibility to utilize resources optimally, mobility, and accessibility to the latest technology and software.

  • Reduce costs and optimize computing resources - By using cloud application platforms, you do not need to invest in physical infrastructure such as servers and data centers. With the access to on-demand services and resources, you not only save millions you also reduce the risk associated with dependency on traditional computing resources.
  • Support collaboration and reduce time-to-market - Different stakeholders working on application development projects, from the developers, designers, testing experts, to the client, can collaborate using a cloud application platform. This real-time collaboration and sharing of content and components, reduces iterations, improves application development and shortens the time-to-market.
  • Utilize resources on-demand and customize requirements - In a conventional IT investment plan, there are resources that would stay idle during off-peak periods. Cloud application platforms allow for utilization of resources optimally, on-demand. During peak times, you can customize your capacity and cloud requirements, thereby saving on investment in resources, such as servers and storage equipment, which could be under-utilized during low demand periods.
  • Enable mobility and access to services on-the-go - Mobility is an important aspect of modernization. Users want access anywhere, everywhere, on all devices. Using cloud platforms, you provide your users with access to applications on several devices including their mobile phones and even using a web browser. As the platform is linked to databases and integrated with APIs, users can access services across devices at any time, giving them the mobility to function on-the-go.
  • Gain access to the latest technology and get a competitive edge - Cloud application platforms also gives you access to the latest technology and trends. Something you would have found difficult to achieve in a conventional IT system setup. By leveraging the latest technology in the market, you can increase your potential to gain a competitive edge.


Time-Sensitive and Cost-Conscious Demands of Enterprise Application Development

The potential of cloud-based, low-code platforms

In the high-speed journey of modernization, enterprise application development projects have become time-sensitive and cost-conscious. Cloud-based, low-code platforms address both these demands. Not only do they help you to develop applications with speed, they also enable you to utilize resources optimally, reduce development cycles, improve time-to-market rates and lower costs.

A cloud-based, low-code platform, could typically be considered as a Containerized Cloud, one which comprises many instances. An instance here can be compared to host computers which do more than just storing and managing data. In a work space instance, users can develop apps independently and they each get a container which isolates their workspace from the other users. In an app deployment instance, when apps are deployed in the cloud, a separate container is allocated for each app, thereby ensuring apps are deployed independent of each other. In a platform, multiple internal services are managed and run using separate Docker Containers and they can talk to each other with REST services. Platform containers orchestrate and direct the Docker engine to perform operations such as starting or stopping a user container.

Rather than relying on expensive, one-time, customized solutions, low-code platforms offer the flexibility to customize, collaborate, integrate, and deploy according to your changing requirements. The important features of low-code platforms include drag-and-drop visual development, ease of integration, multi-device support, extensive customization, granular security, app containerization using Docker technology, and instant one-click deployment to private and public clouds. It's these features of low-code platforms that make them a necessary investment to address the demands of modernization in this cloud-enabled environment.