Anthos lets you have your cake and eat it too.
By Adam Croissant, Solution Architect
Anthos is Google’s modern application platform, built for the enterprise with hybrid- and multi-cloud solutions in mind. It enables increased developer velocity while providing consistency for your operators, regardless of where you’re running your workloads. From a single screen, Anthos allows your service and infrastructure operators to view and control your services regardless of whether they’re deployed on Google Cloud Platform, in an on-prem data center, or even a Kubernetes cluster in another cloud provider.
Why is this a big deal? In short, it means that no longer do you have to require operational staff to work in two worlds (the old and the new) or take on all the associated costs of doing this.
Relieving the burden of unmovable workloads
For those who are increasing their investment in the cloud but are stymied by the difficulty (or impossibility) of moving certain workloads to the cloud, the appeal of migrating without disrupting current operations should be obvious. This is especially relevant for industries with data locality or strict compliance requirements.
Want to move out-of-scope workloads to the cloud, while keeping in-scope workloads in your own data centers, all while ensuring requests are routed to the appropriate cloud region or data center based on the users locality? Anthos helps you accomplish that. By enabling you to govern your on-prem and cloud workloads from a single system—and covered by a single service mesh—Anthos empowers you to keep tightly regulated workloads running in your own data centers while migrating those workloads that are safe to run in the cloud.
Freedom and velocity
A key aspect of how Anthos enables greater velocity is the consistent abstraction it provides to your development teams. Anthos liberates development teams from having to think about where a given workload is going to run, and what that means for the infrastructure the workload will run on top of. A great example is how Major League Baseball uses Anthos. Rather than requiring separate technical stacks and skillsets to develop in-stadium versus cloud workloads, MLB uses Anthos to let developers to move quickly against a standard backdrop—regardless of where their applications will run.
Think about how powerful this can be for other large companies with a significant physical presence! In retail, using Anthos can prevent you from having to maintain complex, bespoke deployment systems in order to use the same backend services code for both physical stores and eCommerce. Stores are often expected to continue to operate in the event of an internet outage that prevents connection back to a central data center or cloud provider, which adds significant complexity to workload deployments. And it’s this that Anthos massively simplifies.
Goodbye to vendor lock-in
Many organizations are interested in modernizing and increasing velocity while avoiding vendor lock-in (when you’re dependent on a single vendor and unable to switch). This can be difficult. Avoiding lock-in often means sacrificing some of the benefits of public cloud, as organizations build their own systems on top of cloud infrastructure rather than relying on proprietary managed services. Though it is a Google product, Anthos is a key enabler of moving to the cloud without lock-in. Anthos is compatible with any Kubernetes-compliant cluster, so you can bring your own clusters and manage them all through a single screen.
This includes integration with Amazon EKS, and there will soon be support for Azure and bare metal options as well. Anthos offsets some of the typical tradeoffs of a cloud-agnostic solution by making serverless available in your clusters (even on-prem) through Cloud Run for Anthos. This makes it a compelling option when compared to other common solutions for a lock-in free cloud platform, such as Cloud Foundry.
The future is in meeting customers where they are
Anthos offers a way forward that solves many of the biggest challenges faced by organizations today by meeting customers where they are. As I said above, it really does let you have your cake and eat it, too:
- Run workloads where they need to run today, and move applications from on-prem to the cloud only when you want to—without sacrificing operational capability and consistent governance.
- Enable your engineering teams to work on modern technology that allows for rapid development and delivery, without fragmenting your technical ecosystem.
- Avoid vendor lock-in through an open source-based solution that allows you to view, maintain, and secure your workloads regardless of where they run.
With Anthos, Google has put forward a solution that has the potential to simplify cloud strategy at the organizational level. I’m excited to see the new, exciting ways that companies leverage Anthos to solve complex problems.