Tech

AWS vs. Azure: The Key Differences

Azure and AWS are two of the world’s leading cloud solutions, differing on several vital parameters. Azure by Microsoft and Amazon Web Services or AWS provides a similar set of core features and cloud capabilities. However, they differ from each other in some essential aspects. In this article, we discuss the differences between AWS and Azure. 

Cloud service providers like Microsoft Azure and AWS are more alike than different. Both offer a wide range of services, from computing power to storage, and have become essential tools for businesses of all sizes.

But when it comes down to it, there can only be one king of the cloud. So which provider is it? Let’s look at Microsoft Azure and AWS and see who comes out on top.

Cloud Computing

What is Cloud Computing?

Generally, cloud computing is the on-demand delivery of IT resources and applications via the Internet with pay-as-you-go pricing.

Cloud computing delivers servers, storage, databases, networking, software, analytics, and intelligence over the Internet to provide faster innovation, flexible resources, and scale. Typically, companies pay for cloud services to help them save money on operating expenses by running infrastructure more efficiently and expanding their business.

Microsoft Azure vs. AWS

What is Microsoft Azure?

AWS vs. Azure_ The Key Differences

Microsoft Azure, often known as Azure, is Microsoft’s cloud computing platform. It provides various services for computing, storage, networking, and analytics. Azure offers Platforms as a Service (PaaS) and Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS).

PaaS is a complete development and deployment environment with everything you need to build and run applications. Meanwhile, IaaS provides virtual machines and other infrastructure resources in the cloud.

Moreover, Azure aids in the management of applications through Microsoft-operated data centers. It is a comprehensive set of cloud services that developers and IT professionals use to create and manage applications through Microsoft-managed data centers. It has an extensive toolkit that is constantly growing and has been the industry leader in cloud computing for more than ten years. 

What is the Amazon Web Service (AWS)?

AWS is a comprehensive, evolving cloud computing platform like Azure, provided by Amazon.com. It provides on-demand computing resources and services in the cloud, with pay-as-you-go pricing. Moreover, Amazon Web Service is a complex and highly customizable platform that works best for companies that run non-Windows services.

The Amazon Web Service can be broken into three main products including EC2, Glacier, and S3.

The cloud computing platform offers a broad set of global cloud-based products, including computing, storage, databases, analytics, networking, mobile, developer tools, management tools, IoT, security, and enterprise applications. These services help companies move faster, lower IT costs, and scale.

Currently, it has 81 availability zones in which its servers are located, and these serviced regions are divided to give users the permission to set geographical limits on their services. Because of this, AWS is considered the world’s leading provider of cloud solutions. Many prominent and well-known companies, including Netflix, Hulu, Spotify, and Ubisoft, have been using AWS.

The Key Difference Between Azure and AWS

What makes them different?

The primary differences between Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure relate to computing, storage, networking, and pricing flexibility. Both provide the basic capabilities of a flexible cloud, such as autoscaling, self-service, pay-as-you-go pricing, security, compliance, identity access management features, and instant provisioning. There are still distinctions between the two based on their shared characteristics, including automatic scaling and instant provisioning.

So if you’re curious about their differences, you have come to the right place. We have made a comprehensive list of comparisons between Azure and AWS. Let’s take a look at their fundamental differences.

Market Share Revenue and Growth

Currently, AWS has become one of the world’s most popular cloud computing service providers, with its revenue crossing the mark of $59 Billion.

Although Microsoft became the lead for market share revenue and growth a few years back, AWS’s market share has been positive in the first quarter of 2021.

Microsoft Azure’s market share grew from 15 percent to 18 percent in 2018, while AWS’s declined slightly from 34 percent to 32 percent during the same period.

Thus, AWS appears to be leading in market share and revenue. Still, several other parameters can be a game-changer in this battle of AWS vs. Azure.

Open Source Community

Open-source community support is one of the most important criteria when comparing any two technologies. Microsoft Azure has made a significant contribution to the open-source community. According to Microsoft’s site, they are committed to open source and want to make it easy for developers to use Azure with their favorite tools.

Documentation and Simplicity of Use

AWS’ primary focus is on developers and IT professionals who want to use cloud services. It offers greater ease of use and is a better choice for first-time users. Moreover, AWS has excellent simple and concise documentation with tutorials and how-tos that guide you through each process. 

On the other hand, Microsoft Azure wants to be a comprehensive cloud service provider for everyone. So, it has a lot of documentation on various topics like big data, artificial intelligence (AI), and the Internet of things (IoT).

Cloud Storage Capacity

AWS and Microsoft Azure provide Object Storage, a file or data storage system that stores unstructured data in the cloud as objects. These objects can be anything like images, videos, log files, backups, etc.

The difference is that the AWS cloud object storage solution offers high availability and automatic replication across regions. Meanwhile, Azure uses page blobs and temporary storage for VM-based volumes.

Database Capability

AWS allows users to use either the AWS RDS or Azure SQL server database solution, which can handle both organized and unstructured information or big data. Amazon RDS is a more durable option than Azure SQL server for storing data in AWS.

Support Plan

AWS offers three types of support plans, which are Basic, Developer, and Business. Meanwhile, Microsoft Azure has four types of support plans: Basic, Developer, Standard, and Professional Direct.

You would only need to research how to find the perfect fit for your Microsoft Azure support plan and how to choose the ideal option for your AWS support plan for a broad explanation.

Compatibility

AWS is compatible with all major operating systems, including Microsoft Windows, Linux, and macOS. AWS is also compatible with a wide range of applications, including MongoDB, Cassandra, Hadoop, etc. Microsoft

Meanwhile, Azure is also compatible with these three operating systems. Aside from that, it is only compatible with a few Microsoft-specific applications, such as Microsoft SQL Server and Microsoft SharePoint.

Licensing and License Mobility

AWS has a wide variety of licensing options that allow you to choose the one that best suits your needs and budget. You can either pay as you go or subscribe to an annual or monthly plan.

Azure, on the other hand, does not have as many licensing options as AWS. You can either pay as you go or subscribe to a monthly plan. However, Azure does offer something called license mobility, which allows you to move your existing Microsoft licenses from on-premises to the cloud.

Security and Data Privacy

AWS and Azure both take security and data privacy seriously. They have implemented various security measures to protect your data, including physical, network, and application-level security.

AWS and Azure also comply with major international standards, such as ISO 27001, SOC II, PCI DSS, etc. So, you can be sure that your data is safe and secure with either AWS or Azure.

FAQs

Q: Which is better, AWS or Azure?

A: Both AWS and Azure have their advantages and disadvantages. You must evaluate your needs to determine which one is the best for you.

Q: Which one is more expensive, AWS or Azure?

A: Both AWS and Azure have different pricing models. You should first assess your needs and budget to determine which one is more expensive for you.

Q: Which one is more secure, AWS or Azure?

A: Both AWS and Azure take security and data privacy seriously. They have implemented various security measures to protect your data, including physical, network, and application-level.

Conclusion

AWS and Azure are both great cloud service providers. They have their strengths and weaknesses. You should evaluate your needs to determine which one is the best for you. Microsoft Azure might be better if you’re looking for more Microsoft-specific applications. At the same time, AWS might be a better choice if you need more flexibility in terms of licensing options. Again, it all boils down to what your company or organization needs.

Sandy Villamor

Call me Sandy, a writer, and blogger of LifeStyleConvo & UrbanHouses, who worked as a full-time content creator. A writer by day and reader by night.

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