A public cloud is a web-based service model in which a hosting provider offers shared resources, like apps, servers and storage, to the general public. It’s a multi-tenant environment, with different customers using the same pool of IT infrastructure. You pay for these shared resources on a pay-as-you-go basis. The leading public clouds include AWS®, Azure®, and OpenStack Public Cloud.
How Does a Public Cloud Work?
Public cloud is one of three types of clouds. There are also private clouds and hybrid clouds. A private cloud is dedicated to a single organization and provides it with strong control and security over its apps, data and systems. A hybrid cloud incorporates two different kinds of clouds — often a public and private cloud — that are interconnected so they can share apps and data.
Public clouds are the most popular form of cloud computing, According to RightScale’s State of the Cloud survey, 89% of organizations used the public cloud in 2016.
Private clouds are the second most popular type of cloud, with a 77% adoption rate. Hybrid clouds lag behind both public and private clouds, with 71% of organizations using them.
Today, many organizations use both public and private clouds. The RightScale respondents, for instance, typically use three public clouds and three private clouds. Increasingly, medium and large enterprises operate in a multi-cloud world.