Since late 2017, companies have been using different cloud-native technologies side-by-side at an increasing pace to both build new cloud-native applications and refactor traditional applications. According to the latest report released by the Cloud Foundry Foundation, an increasing number of companies are developing new cloud-native applications. PaaS is being broadly deployed by more companies than ever thus, it stands to reason that these two upsurges are happening in tandem.
With the introduction of PaaS, containers and serverless computing, current technologies are being used simultaneously to aggregate the best possible solution for problems such as multi-platform usage and scaling operations. Based on a survey of enterprise developers, 77 percent are using or evaluating Platforms-as-a-Service (PaaS), 72 percent are using or evaluating containers and 46 percent are using or evaluating serverless computing. More than a third (39 percent) are using a combination of all three technologies together.
So why have containers gained traction recently? A simple explanation is they give companies on their cloud journey a way to test out cloud-native technologies, like building in continuous delivery practices and refactoring applications. For example, companies using containers can orchestrate them with the much-discussed Kubernetes, which software developers rank as the top orchestration tool, overtaking Docker Swarm for the first time since we began tracking container orchestration tools.
Key findings also dictate that containers have gained favor along with serverless computing: A serverless experience for developers enables business to move faster with greater agility and decreased production cycles. For companies choosing to develop new or refactor existing applications, they are choosing containers. Serverless computing is being evaluated with rapid momentum. Only 43 percent of respondents are not using serverless and 10 percent more companies are evaluating serverless than in 2017.
Another aspect to keep in mind is the importance of flexibility & interoperability as a significant metric, which ranks “Integration with existing tools” and “Flexibility to work with new tools” in the top five attributes in a platform, alongside Security, Support, and Price.
In this multi-platform world, it should come as no surprise that, as they become more agile in the usage of these tools, developers are searching for a suite of technologies to have interoperability. They want technologies that integrate with their current environments in order to address their needs today — but that are flexible enough to address their needs in the future. By choosing platforms offering maximum flexibility and easy integration, engineers can be confident that whatever technology or culture change comes next — whether serverless, continuous integration/continuous delivery (CI/CD), or Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning (AI/ML) — they will seamlessly integrate new innovations and deliver maximum developer productivity.
As companies make decisions on new technologies, it is crucial to understand which are poised for wide-scale adoption — and which will fizzle as hype. Here is a look at developers’ priorities over the next one to two years: Containers, continuous integration/continuous delivery (CI/CD), and cloud-native architecture rank highest in companies’ plans in the next year. This is followed by DevOps, which is currently more in use than planned, and Artificial intelligence/Machine learning (AI/ML), which is less used, but very much part of companies’ future plans.
To recap, PaaS, containers and serverless computing offers three discrete options for organizations seeking cloud based digital solutions, but the possibilities don’t stop there. With their ability to integrate with one another and with current technical environments, these technologies give companies the flexibility to evaluate, test and deploy a multitude of technologies that lays the foundation which meets their needs now and in the future. Specifically, developers require new technologies that integrate with their current process and environment and those technologies must be flexible enough to adapt to what’s next.