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Cloud Native Applications

Why Enterprises need to build Cloud Native Applications? Quick Guide

Gursimran Singh | 13 February 2024

Why Enterprises need to build Cloud Native?

Introduction to Cloud Native Applications

Applications that are developed and deployed using cloud-based technologies are known as Cloud-Native Applications. They are hosted and managed in the cloud. In other words, it is run from end to end in the cloud. These applications exploit the advantages of the cloud computing delivery model.

Cloud-native development is an approach to speed up building new applications, optimizing existing ones, and connecting all of them. It involves DevOps, agile methodology, cloud platforms, containers like Kubernetes and Docker, and continuous delivery. It speeds up the process of development and deployment. They are designed to be used in any cloud environment.

1. Cloud-native technologies generally prefers microservices architecture.
2. This multifaceted approach necessitates a comprehensive change cycle that prioritizes the journey over the destination.
3. This approach emphasizes developing new applications and modernizing existing ones by cloud principles, adopting services and processes optimized for cloud computing's agility and automation.

What are the Benefits of Cloud Native Applications?

Cloud-native applications provide numerous advantages for businesses, delivering a range of benefits that can drive efficiency and success.

1. Lightweight Containerization

Cloud Native applications are generally lightweight. They are developed so, to have faster startup times, scalability at the granular level. These applications are packaged as lightweight containers, ensuring portability and the ability to run anywhere.

2. Scalability

Cloud-native applications allow for easy scaling, enabling businesses to meet fluctuating demands quickly and efficiently.

3. Hardware Decoupling

Cloud-native technologies provide decoupling from hardware, allowing for greater flexibility and adaptability. These applications can run on commodity hardware as wall es Enterprise Grade Servers and Public Clouds. These applications have dependency on Container Runtime environment only.

4. Polyglot Development

Cloud native applications can be developed using best-of-breed languages and frameworks, utilizing a polyglot approach. This approach ensures that businesses have access to the most suitable tools and technologies for their specific needs.

5. Loosely Coupled Microservices

These applications are generally designed as loosely coupled microservices, enabling modular development and improved flexibility and scalability.

6. API-Centric

Cloud Native Applications are generally connected to each other through APIs and follows API first approach.

7. Isolation from Server and OS Dependencies

Since these applications are generally dependent on Container Runtime. These applications are isolated from various servers and operating system dependencies, reducing the risk of conflicts, and ensuring smoother operation.

8. Deployment on Self-Service, Elastic Cloud Infrastructure

Cloud-native technologies are deployed on self-service, elastic cloud infrastructure, allowing for easy provisioning and dynamic resource allocation.

9. Managed through Agile DevOps Processes

Cloud-native applications are managed through agile DevOps processes, promoting collaboration, faster development cycles, and continuous improvement.

10. Policy-Driven Resource Allocation

Resource allocation in cloud-native applications is defined and driven by policies, ensuring efficient utilization of resources and cost optimization.

11. Agility, Resilience, and Portability

Cloud-native applications provide higher agility, resilience, and portability across different cloud providers, empowering businesses to adapt and scale as needed.
By embracing cloud-native technologies, businesses can take advantage of these benefits and unlock improved efficiency, scalability, and resilience.

Understanding Cloud Native Application Development

Cloud-native application development involves the process of building and deploying cloud-native applications. This approach requires a cultural shift in the development process, where developers embrace specific software practices to enhance efficiency and meet evolving user demands. Below, we outline some common cloud-native development practices that facilitate this transformation.

1. Continuous Integration

Continuous Integration (CI) is a software practice that developers use to frequently and seamlessly integrate changes into a shared code base. By making small, frequent changes, development becomes more efficient as it allows for faster issue identification and troubleshooting. CI tools automatically evaluate the quality of the code for each change, giving development teams increased confidence when adding new features.

2. Continuous Delivery

Continuous delivery (CD) is a crucial software practice that empowers cloud-native development. By implementing CD, development teams can ensure that their microservices are always prepared for deployment in the cloud. To minimize risk while making changes, such as introducing new features or resolving bugs, these teams leverage software automation tools. The seamless integration of continuous integration (CI) and continuous delivery (CD) enables efficient and reliable software delivery.

3. Continuous Testing

Continuous testing is an approach to software testing that emphasizes integrating testing activities seamlessly throughout the CI/CD lifecycle. Unlike traditional testing methods, where testing is often treated as a separate phase conducted after development is complete, continuous testing advocates for testing early, frequently, and automatically at every stage of the development process.

4. Serverless

Serverless computing is a cutting-edge cloud-native approach that empowers developers by allowing the cloud provider to handle all the complexities of managing server infrastructure. This approach follows a fully managed runtime of a specific platform on top of which the application is developed. This means that developers can focus solely on building their applications, knowing that the cloud infrastructure will automatically scale and configure itself to meet their application's needs. With serverless architecture, developers also benefit from paying only for the resources their application uses, and the added convenience of having compute resources automatically removed when the application is not running.

What are the Best Practices for Developing Cloud Native Applications?

The best practices for developing cloud-native applications involve leveraging the power of microservices architecture. By breaking down an application into smaller, independent services, developers can enhance the resilience, scalability, and flexibility of their applications. This approach also enables developers to work on different parts of the application independently, reducing development and deployment time and effort.

1. Use Microservices Architecture

Microservices architecture is one of the essential aspects of cloud-native application development. It breaks down an application into more minor, independent services that can be developed, deployed, and scaled separately.This approach helps in making applications more resilient, scalable, and flexible. It also enables developers to work on different application parts independently, reducing the time and effort required for development and deployment.
Microservices architecture has several advantages, including.

  • Fault Isolation

With microservices, if a part of the application fails, it does not affect the entire application.

  • Independent Deployment

Each microservice can be deployed independently, which makes the deployment process faster and more efficient.

  • Scalability

Microservices can be scaled independently based on the workload, which ensures that resources are utilized efficiently.

2. Use Containerization

Containerization is another critical practice in cloud-native application development. Containers provide a lightweight, portable runtime environment that isolates the application and its dependencies from the underlying infrastructure. This approach makes deploying and scaling applications across different environments easier without worrying about compatibility issues.
Using containers has several benefits, including:

  • Consistency

Containers ensure that the application runs consistently across different environments.

  • Isolation

Containers isolate the application and its dependencies from the underlying infrastructure, which improves security and reduces the risk of conflicts between different applications.

  • Scalability

Containers can be scaled horizontally, which ensures that resources are utilized efficiently.

3. Use Infrastructure as Code (IaC)

Infrastructure as code (IaC) is a practice that involves automating the infrastructure setup and configuration using code. This approach ensures consistency across different environments and reduces the risk of human errors. It also makes it easier to manage infrastructure at scale and enables organizations to adopt a DevOps culture.

Using IaC has several benefits, including

  • Consistency

IaC ensures that the infrastructure is consistent across different environments, which reduces the risk of configuration errors.

  • Scalability

IaC makes it easier to manage infrastructure at scale.

  • Version Control

IaC enables infrastructure to be version-controlled, which makes it easier to track changes and roll back changes if necessary.

4. Continuous Integration and Continuous Deployment (CI/CD)

Continuous Integration and Continuous Deployment (CI/CD) is a practice that involves automating the cloud native software development pipeline from code commit to deployment. This approach ensures that any changes made to the application are thoroughly tested and deployed to production quickly and efficiently. It also enables organizations to release new features and updates faster, improving overall agility and competitiveness.

Using CI/CD has several benefits, including:

  • Faster Deployment

CI/CD ensures that changes are deployed quickly and efficiently.

  • Consistency

CI/CD ensures the application is consistent across different environments.

  • Quality

CI/CD ensures that the application is thoroughly tested before deployment, which reduces the risk of errors.

5. Monitoring and Logging

Monitoring and logging are essential practices for cloud-native applications. It helps identify and fix issues before they become critical, reduces downtime, and improves the overall user experience. It also provides insights into the application's performance, which can be used to optimize the application and infrastructure.

Using monitoring and logging has several benefits, including:

  • Improved Performance

Monitoring and logging provide insights into the application's performance, which can be used to optimize the application and infrastructure.

  • Reduced Downtime

Monitoring and logging help in identifying

Go Serverless

Unlike traditional server-based solutions, serverless solutions feature automatic scaling, high availability, a pay-per-use billing system, and increased agility for increasing productivity and optimizing costs. Using serverless technologies is one of the best practices for cloud-native applications as it not only helps in running code, managing data, and integrating applications without having to provision or maintain servers, but you can also use serverless technologies to improve performance. 

introduction-icon  How to Build a Cloud-Native Applications?

Here are some key steps to adopt cloud-native applications and ensure a successful transition:

1. Embrace the DevOps process and methodologies, fostering collaboration between developers and operations teams.

2. Break down monolithic applications into smaller microservices, allowing for greater flexibility and scalability.

3. Collaborate with architects to determine how to divide the application into independent business logic, ensuring a modular and efficient design.

4. Ensure that the team follows the Twelve Factors, a set of best practices for building modern, scalable applications.

5. Choose tools that specifically address the challenges and requirements of your project, focusing on solving problems in the most efficient and effective way.

6. Keep your infrastructure as code in version control, such as Git, to easily manage and track changes.

7. Automate manual steps wherever possible, streamlining processes and reducing the risk of errors.

8. Implement a robust CI/CD (Continuous Integration/Continuous Delivery) pipeline and constantly strive to improve it, enabling faster and more reliable software releases.

By following these steps, businesses can successfully adopt cloud-native applications and unlock the benefits of improved efficiency, scalability, and resilience.

Why Organizations Should Build Cloud Native Applications?

Simple answer is, to fully leverage Cloud Computing benefits. Cloud offers a lot of benefits by default but there are many features which are only unlocked if your application supports Cloud Native architecture. Some of those benefits are:-

1. Elastic Infrastructure & Scaling Out Faster

Cloud-native applications are designed to scale dynamically based on demand, the microservices developed in Cloud Native Architecture allow enterprises to handle spikes in traffic or workload seamlessly. This scalability enables businesses to meet the needs of growing user bases and handle fluctuations in demand efficiently.

2. Agility in the Business

Cloud-native architectures promote agility by enabling rapid iteration and deployment of software updates. Since the applications developed have characteristics that it does not depend on Hardware and are flexible and open to integrate with other applications through APIs. Enterprises can deliver new features and enhancements to customers more quickly, respond to market changes faster, and stay ahead of competitors in fast-paced industries.

3. Cost Efficient Solution

Cloud-native applications can help enterprises optimize costs by leveraging pay-as-you-go pricing models and efficient resource utilization. With cloud services, businesses can avoid upfront infrastructure investments, scale resources as needed, and only pay for the resources they consume. A truly Cloud Native application can be easily deployed on Multiple Cloud Providers without getting vendor locked in.

4. Resilience & Disaster Recovery:

Cloud-native architectures are designed for resilience, with built-in redundancy, fault tolerance, and disaster recovery capabilities. Enterprises can achieve high availability and reliability for their applications, ensuring uninterrupted service for customers and minimizing downtime.

5. Innovation

Your applications and platform will be quick to adopt new services if the architecture supports cloud native characteristics. Cloud-native technologies enable enterprises to innovate and experiment more freely by providing access to a wide range of cloud services, APIs, and development tools. Enterprises can leverage emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence, machine learning, and IoT to create innovative solutions and differentiate themselves in the market.

6. Developer Productivity

Cloud-native development practices, such as microservices architecture, containerization, and automation, can improve developer productivity and collaboration. Developers can work more efficiently, deploy code faster, and focus on building features that deliver value to customers, rather than managing infrastructure or dependencies.

7. Global Reach

By Leaveraging Edge Locations and Local Zones, Cloud-native applications can be deployed globally across multiple regions and availability zones, allowing enterprises to reach customers worldwide and deliver low-

latency, high-performance experiences. This global reach enables enterprises to expand into new markets and serve diverse customer needs effectively.

8. Security

While security concerns are often raised in cloud environments, cloud-native applications can be designed with security in mind from the outset. Enterprises can leverage cloud-native security services, encryption, identity and access management (IAM), and compliance certifications to protect sensitive data and ensure regulatory compliance.

Build Next Generation Cloud Native Applications 

A world of clouds surrounds us all. Enterprises are moving to the cloud very rapidly as it provides more features to the user. Handling data, building applications, and providing services using the cloud is very easy. They are easy to manage and cost only on a use basis. So what are your thoughts now?