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Internal vs. Cloud Hosting for Your Industrial IoT Strategy

As organizations move forward to implement their Industrial IoT strategies, one of the biggest decisions they face is using internal vs. cloud hosting for their applications and data. In our experience, this tends to be one of the most difficult and divisive decisions in an organization when getting started. To help you navigate these harsh waters, we have put this guide together to better explain the pros and cons of internal vs cloud hosting.

What Exactly Is Cloud Hosting?

Internal hosting, otherwise known as “on-premise,” is easy to define; it means you own all the equipment your data and applications run on and store them locally within your business property. Cloud hosting is a more obscure term which really just means your data and applications are on a computer in someone else’s property. So why do we call it the “Cloud?” The main reason is because most cloud hosting is made up of hundreds to thousands of computers running together while sharing processing power and resources.

What Are the Factors You Need to Consider?

Cost

The biggest factor is cost. Cloud hosting offers varying monthly rates based on your needs (usually with annual discounts) that can seem really expensive. It might seem like a no-brainer to save money with a local solution, even if you lose some performance. However, there are a lot of hidden costs in running an internal hosting solution.


Security

Data privacy and security are big concerns. It is common to assume that hosting your own information will be more secure, but that is usually not the case. Cloud companies typically have a very secure infrastructure, and the true security of your data has more to do with your software and processes.


Regulations

Some industries have regulatory limits and hurdles which may require one kind of hosting or another. Most regulations we encounter are easier to fulfill using cloud hosting, but a few require some kind of internal hosting. As a whole, Industrial IoT is so new that regulations haven’t caught up yet.


Scalability

Cloud hosting solutions have the amazing capability to scale instantly. Need 2x the computing power? No problem, just ask. Need more storage space? Just press a button. Scaling is a continuing expense when you try to use internal hosting, and very time consuming.


Speed

The speed of your applications is critical. The speed of processing and response time (Latency) can ruin your user experience. An internal hosting solution can seldom compete with the performance of cloud hosting. After all, no matter how fast your computers are, they aren’t going to be as fast as thousands of computers working together.


Reliability

People worry about how reliable cloud hosting is, but all major cloud hosting companies have %99.99+ uptime. Most businesses have more power outages during the year than they do cloud hosting outages. Of course, all these factors depend on picking a reputable cloud hosting solution.

Industrial IoT Has Unique Needs

Even if you have used internal hosting for things like email or file sharing with no problems, Industrial IoT is a unique situation. Data is being sent, collected, and processed 24/7 from many different sources. This kind of demand quickly tests the limits of any infrastructure. Also, if you have an outage, you may miss out on critical information. It's like the difference between a powering a fan vs. air conditioning.

Internal Hosting Is an Iceberg Most People Aren't Fully Aware Of

Your Decision

It may seem like this article is a straight push for cloud hosting, and you would be right. Most of the time, cloud hosting really is the best way to go to save money and have a reliable hosting experience. However, we also understand that cloud hosting just isn’t a good choice for many organizations due to other factors. This is why DATTUS can run on just about ANY cloud or internal hosting solution.

As organizations move forward to implement their Industrial IoT strategies, one of the biggest decisions they face is using internal vs. cloud hosting for their applications and data. In our experience, this tends to be one of the most difficult and divisive decisions in an organization when getting started. To help you navigate these harsh waters, we have put this guide together to better explain the pros and cons of internal vs cloud hosting.