banner

Cloud Application Development Guide: How to Choose Cloud Apps in 2024

Confused about cloud apps in 2024? This guide simplifies your choice! Learn key factors like scalability, cost and ease of management to find the perfect cloud app for a smooth, successful journey.

February 29 | Updated on March 23 | 10 min
Alex Padalka

Alex Padalka

CEO at JetBase

Modern applications cope with tremendous computing power, and businesses managing them seek out cloud application development for their projects. However, choosing the right solution requires an understanding of how the industry works and what its variables can be. So today, we’d like to share JetBase’s experience on this subject.

With almost a decade on the market, we’ve learned all about cloud apps and how to make them efficiently without any compromises on quality. In this article, we will discuss the types of cloud solutions and their benefits for your company. Precisely, we’ll take you through the development process in stages, explaining the importance of each one, and discuss the cost of development and ways to reduce it.

We’ll round off with tips on addressing the challenges that could arise during cloud app development. This should give you a good primer on the state of the market and the ways you can approach development. Without further ado, let’s get started with JetBase’s guide to cloud development.

What Is a Cloud-Based Application?

A cloud app is an application that functions using remote (also known as cloud) servers. Users interact with them through browsers on desktop or mobile devices, and APIs handle the communication between these devices and servers.
Cloud apps’ unique structure allows them to:

  • Provide faster responses to user inputs
  • Scale up or down depending on the number of concurrent users
  • Reinforce data security
  • Use interconnected APIs

What Is a Cloud-Based Application?

Being more prominent in cloud applications development than in non-cloud architecture, such features are lucrative for companies that want a quality solution with some extra positives. In particular, they let businesses avoid direct server management, speed up development, and require less manpower post-launch. Also, not having to run your own servers means fewer expenses and no need to devote extra space to the hardware infrastructure.

While non-cloud apps were once the norm, the market for cloud apps has recently grown substantially and will only keep expanding. As a result, it becomes safer to say that the cloud is taking over, with giants like Microsoft and Google investing in their own cloud services.

These solutions look more and more preferable, given the plenty of computing power, fault tolerance, and security measures they handle. However, it’s not just about the financial aspect and convenience. There are several different cloud app options you can choose from, making cloud apps customized to your business needs.

3 Types of Cloud Solutions for Enterprises

There are three key types of cloud apps you can choose from to develop cloud application plans.

3 Types of Cloud Solutions for Enterprises

Software as a Service (SaaS)

SaaS is run on servers that don’t belong to the company that made that software. In practice, it means you can access SaaS from anywhere – with any device and without the need to install it.

Oftentimes SaaS is considered synonymous with cloud apps in general, as it’s by far the most well-known type of cloud solution. The prominent SaaS types include CRM (customer relationship management) software, Salesforce, and Hubspot solutions.

Adobe Creative Cloud is also an example of cloud based app development. That’s a good example of a giant corporation relying on external cloud servers for its solutions, which are then used by millions of customers.

SaaS helps companies by offering them access to complex, highly customizable tools without having to develop and maintain them. It’s one of the most commonplace cloud app types for a reason. Convenience and cost efficiency are hard to beat here, especially on an enterprise scale.

Platform as a Service (PaaS)

Let’s say you want to create a truly innovative application but don’t have the necessary hardware and tools. This is where PaaS comes in, as a company can simply rent software and hardware resources for cloud app development.

PaaS is perfect for decentralized development with many collaborators. The cloud provider takes care of the maintenance while you create.

PaaS is traditionally used by smaller companies that may not have the capital to buy the necessary tools and hardware. However, that doesn’t mean that enterprises can’t rely on it too. A platform like Windows Azure has enough computing power and features to replace physical environments completely, even when it comes to an enterprise.

Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)

A step up from PaaS, IaaS implies everything about your infrastructure is in the hands of your cloud provider. The network, the servers, the databases, and even the visualization are all processed through the cloud. As a result, you reduce overhead costs substantially while getting all the right tools to develop cloud based application.

With IaaS, you get security layers (PCI-DSS compliance, complete data encryption), load balancing, and clustering features. They all come pre-made, not only speeding up development but guaranteeing they’ve been time-tested. As a result, a lot of small and mid-size companies turn to IaaS for their development needs.

We don’t necessarily consider this the most relevant type for enterprises, as they can typically run their own infrastructure easily enough. It is, however, potentially a bit more budget-friendly. Plus, with the ability to run IaaS on a private cloud, it can be a viable option even at this level.

With these three types explained, you should have a grasp of which one is the most relevant to you. However, before we proceed to talk about the cloud applications development stages, we’ll quickly address why that development is worth it.

Key Benefits of Cloud-Based Applications

In this section, we highlight all the general advantages of cloud apps in return for your time and money investment.

Cost Efficiency

When your app runs on a cloud service, you pay only for what you use. Spending money on the essentials helps you quickly offset the initial investment you make.

The convenience of having easy, instant access to your data and features will inevitably end up saving you money. You won’t be constantly dealing with errors, downtime, or prolonged maintenance. As a result, your operations will be more efficient and, thus, cost-effective.

Security

Despite some apprehensions that you might have when handling so much control over the cloud provider, security is actually an advantage for cloud apps.

When you choose to develop cloud application solutions, the security of your system is the responsibility of the provider. Therefore, they put a lot of resources into encryption and compliance with security standards.

Flexibility

Flexibility applies to what you can make with more powerful and unique features. It’s also applicable in terms of bandwidth use, as you can easily scale it up based on your needs.

Plus, it’s also flexible in terms of your time, freeing up your team to focus on development instead of any server maintenance or deployment.

Sustainability

The aforementioned higher bandwidth, as well as the general computing power that comes with cloud services, opens up a lot of potential. Thus, developing cloud applications is a good way to secure your business in the future.

With some new technologies, such as AI and LLM, requiring substantial computational power to run and train, the cloud is the way of the future.

Step-by-Step Process for Developing a Cloud Application

This section goes through the stages of the cloud based app development process and shows how to navigate its complexity. Use these tips from our personal experience to make things easier.

Step-by-Step Process for Developing a Cloud Application

Researching the Market and Requirements

As in any sphere, planning and proper analysis are key to your future success. By understanding the market, you can gauge interest in your app and see if a pivot might be in order. Having a clear picture of what’s missing on the market and what’s oversaturated will help you invest smarter.

Research lets you know who your real target audience is, how to market your app to them, and which course you should take in terms of UI/UX design, platform choices, and features. It basically dictates what your app will look like and whether it will be sustainable. This way, doing the research means you won’t have to spend time and money iterating and trying to find the right way to make your app. It will be dictated to you by the market.

Hiring Developers

Once you have a full understanding of the final product, it’s time to get the people who will bring that picture to life. For this, you can take one of three approaches:

  • Staff an in-house department
  • Hire freelancers on a short-term contract
  • Outsource development to a vendor

An in-house department guarantees you will have post-release support and can integrate these devs with the rest of your company. That helps build trust and understanding, which can lead to high-quality work. However, the downsides are onboarding and operational expenses associated with hiring new people long-term.

With freelancers, you eschew the maintenance costs but run the risk of possible inaccessibility when their consultations and work may be needed. Plus, depending on the platform you use and the experience you have, the lack of proper vetting can lead to hiring unskilled developers. You can probably guess what that results in and why it’s crucial to verify any candidate’s experience.

As for outsourcing, you can arrange long-term collaboration and have a team of verified experts doing your project. However, problems can stem from communication or lack thereof. Depending on the region you hire from, your team may be in a drastically different time zone and thus struggle to sync up with you. Plus, cultural clashes could lead to slower development and general unhappiness among the team.

As you can see, there isn’t one perfect choice, and each approach requires care and patience. That will help deal with many of these problems and leave you with a good, smooth collaboration.

Choosing Tech Stack

Ideally, you can simply defer to your dev team on this, and they will help pick the optimal technologies for your cloud based application development. Regardless of whether you trust your team or prefer to pick yourself, consulting with developers on the tech stack is crucial. Choosing your architecture means determining the future of your app and what it can offer users.

Crafting the Design

Refining the UI/UX design of your app is essential to make it intuitive and accessible. While A/B testing is a good way to refine the design, you should hopefully start off on a solid iteration already.

That’s why prior market research is so important. It cuts down on the number of times you’ll need to tweak the design, saving your budget.

MVP Creation and Testing

Delivering the first working version of the product is the last point where you can reasonably request major changes. It’s your chance to really see your product in action, feel out its usability, and understand if it matches your expectations.

At the MVP stage, thorough testing begins to make sure your app ships without any major errors or bugs.

Launching the App

Not much can be said here beyond the obvious: your app should be fully ready for launch with rounds of QA, a prepared marketing campaign, and an estimation of your desired results.

Knowing your own metrics for success and the market situation will help you avoid setting your sights too high.

Costs of Developing Cloud Applications

The cloud-based app development cost commonly includes infrastructure expenses, developer tools, security measures, standard app development expenses, and post-release maintenance costs, among other expenses. Let’s review them all and see where you can save money in each case.

Among the factors that make up the bulk of the expenses in terms of development costs, infrastructure comes first. You will be paying to your provider, with extra costs incurred depending on:

  • Server instances
  • Databases
  • Storage space

In this case, it’s clear that you can save money by going with a cloud provider with better pricing or limiting the app scope. Using less storage and servers means spending less.

Next, you’re paying for developer tools. Most will have licensing fees for frameworks or libraries used in your project. You can limit these expenses by using open-source and free libraries, but that’s not always an option.

Security measures are also important expenses. You’ll be paying for SSL certificates, compliance certs, and other layers of protection like firewalls. You can limit spending by cutting down on the number of payments, but that could be a security risk.

Then, of course, you have the standard app development expenses - designer, developer, and tester salaries. Another category where it’s best not to skimp on the cost, as these are the employees guaranteeing your product’s quality.

Lastly, it’s important to plan post-release maintenance in the budget, as updates, bug fixes, and monitoring tools will always be necessary. Including all possible deviations from regular development helps you be prepared for the worst, while working to create the best app.

Possible Challenges in Developing Cloud Applications and Ways to Mitigate Them

Here are some problems you could face during development and to address them properly.

Considering Interoperability

Every cloud provider is different, so it’s important to adapt your code to work on at least a few of them. This will allow you to keep the app portable and, thus, more useful. Sticking to cloud computing standards will take more time, but it’s key to ensuring the longevity of your product.

Performance Issues

It’s good to be familiar with your chosen provider and knowing where their data centers are. Also, it’s a good idea to conduct testing and see how your app performs specifically in that environment. Latency can be a big problem, and a poorly working product can’t carve out a niche in the market for itself.

Regular testing and monitoring are the answer here, as they help spot problems and ensure stable performance.

Scalability Troubles

On the surface, all providers will promise load tolerance and good scalability. However, when the time comes, user counts rise, and some may struggle to keep up with the demand. That is why it’s important to verify the provider’s claims of processing power. Another solution is to use a hybrid approach so that your structure doesn’t rely solely on one platform.

Why Should You Invest in Cloud App Development?

As a rising industry with plenty of room for everyone to succeed, cloud app development is a smart investment. By getting onto this trend early, you have the chance to be among the top players.

Cloud solutions are used in a variety of industries, too, so you won’t be constrained by having to cater to just one niche. This opens up room for experimentation and expansion.

How Can JetBase Help You With Cloud Application Development?

We’ve talked at length about the ins and outs of cloud apps, from what they are to their benefits and challenges. With all that said, you should now have a pretty clear and balanced picture of cloud development. In fact, we’re hoping you’ve decided to take the leap and try it for yourself. However, handling complex development in-house can be costly and time-consuming.

JetBase would like to throw its hat in the ring as your development partner. Our team has more than 9 years of experience in the market, providing custom development services and developing cloud applications. The cases in our portfolio include some truly challenging yet successful cloud projects.

One of them is Grapevine. Built on AWS, this asynchronous team meeting software got accolades two years in a row on Producthunt, and for a good reason. This SaaS platform used audio and video messages to keep teams coordinated during remote work. We made sure to keep this communication accessible, using AssemblyAI to transcribe messages.

Then, we adapted Grapevine to any device with CloudConvert integration. This allowed users to view the platform and messages in any browser or device type. We also added Stripe and Slack integration to make sure teams could carry over information easily. All of this was backed up by AWS, ensuring stability and smooth operation.

Another of our video-based products, Hello Cecil, used similar tech to upend online interviewing. Also lauded by Producthunt and built on AWS, this platform challenged us by requiring high-quality video streams with multiple users active at once. Building off of an MVP, our team used Ruby on Rails to create a refined, sleek application that ran fast.

We integrated all the major job listing sites, such as LinkedIn, and made sure the application could be run without any additional software. This made it simple to pick up and use, opening up online interviewing even for job seekers who may not have interfaced with such technology.

While these are just two cases from our years of craft, we’d be happy to share more. If you want a quick consultation on cloud app development or to pitch us a project, we’re open to offers. Don’t hesitate to get in touch today.

FAQ

  • What are the best technologies to use for building cloud applications?

  • How can I save money on cloud app creation?

  • Will cloud development become outdated soon?

Tags:
  • App Development
  • Cloud Development

Table of Contents

More success cases
01
HealthCare
HealthCase WebApp
Web App
HealthCase WebApp

SaaSIoTHIPAA

AWSNode.jsReact

US

02
HealthCare
banner
Telemedicine App
banner

SaaS

AWSNode.jsReact

US

03
HealthCare
banner
Mobile App
banner

SaaSIoT

AWSNode.jsReact

US

04
Product
Energex
Quran Pro
Energex

Mobile appAPI

Node.jsNext.js

UK

05
VidPlatform
Hello Cecil

SaaS

RailsReactStripeAWS

US

06
SaaS
AdTool

SaaS

TypeScriptNest.jsReact

US

07
SaaS, LMS
Validate

SaaSLMS

RailsReact

UK

08
Product
Arabesque Kitchen

SaaS

Nest.jsNext.js

UK

09
E-commerce
Hyper Visual
HyperVisual
Hyper Visual

Shopify app

TypeScriptNest.js

UK

10
Product
Socks Builder

BackendWeb App

RailsReactCanvas

US

11
SaaS
Hyper Visual
Grapevine
Hyper Visual

SaaS

RailsReactStripeAWS

US

12
Product
Energex
Energex
Energex

SaaSAWS

AWSServerlessRails

Canada

13
Product
Athan Pro

BackendWeb App

Nest.jsNext.js/React

UK

14
SaaS, LMS
Cybersecurity
Cybersecurity
Cybersecurity

SaaSWeb App

AWSRailsReact

US

Related articles
footer-background
Job opportunities
job@jetbase.io
Marketing cooperations
hi@jetbase.io

All Rights Reserved © 2024 JetBase Inc.

Terms and conditions & Privacy Policy

JetBase Inc 30 N GOULD ST STE R SHERIDAN, WY 82801