Netflix has a new home in the clouds
Companies are always striving to reach new goals. Achieving these benchmarks often goes unnoticed by the general public. This is often because the company is already on such a great trajectory to achieve the goals. This is exactly what has happened with Netflix and its shift to Amazon Web Service and the cloud.
Netflix carries 37% of the burden for evening entertainment downloads in North America. The Wall Street Journal shared that the company will be closing its data center in the summer of 2015. The result is a Netflix that resides entirely in the cloud. No other large business has committed so much to solely the cloud. It is a major event for both Netflix and the cloud.
By the fall, Netflix will be almost entirely made up of data chunks in Amazon's data centers in the cloud. Smaller portions will take up home in various ISP locations and exchange point locations on the Internet.
A huge hardware failure back in 2008 was the first event that steered the company towards the change. Netflix was still trying to break into the public view, and the hardware failure harmed the reliable reputation Netflix was trying to create. Neil Hunt described the path of shifting from hardware to the cloud at an Amazon conference. The conference was last November.
Various components of Netflix was first brought into the cloud. This included Netflix's video player, iPhone technology, discovery and search, as well as account pages. A big data platform went into the cloud in 2013. In 2014, billing and payments entered.
Of course, Netflix will retain some hardware. This will include its content delivery network. This hardware allows the videos to stream without error to consumers. However, the updating of this hardware may take place through the cloud. There is also Netflix hardware storing video in certain ISP locations. It is unlikely that hardware will be going anywhere anytime soon. The largest part of the move to the cloud involved getting Netflix's tools to work in harmony with cloud players.
"Netflix's deployment technology allows for continuous build and integration into our worldwide deployments serving members in over 50 countries," Netflix stated. "Our focus on reliability defined the bar for cloud-based elastic deployments with several layers of failover. Netflix also provides the technology to operate services responsibility with operational insight, peak performance, and security. We provide technologies for data (persistent & semi-persistent) that serve the real-time load to our 62 million members, as well as power the big data analytics that allow us to make informed decisions on how to improve our service."
The shift to the cloud for Netflix is the result of a huge amount of effort by the company. It has required years of planning and networking with high caliber computer specialists. The move may be a watershed moment for other companies. If Netflix is successful in its relocation to the cloud, many other internet companies may follow suit. Indeed, Netflix's move may be the first of a massive migration to the cloud for countless Internet services.
The result of this future shift for many more companies is undetermined. More and more companies placing the bulk of their data inside of the cloud may very well bring about a new version of the Internet. On the other hand, the increased reliance on the cloud may cause future security risks and harmful barriers for new Internet companies entering the marketplace. Only time will tell what Netflix's move will ultimately bring. In the meantime, consumers can admire Netflix's ability to successfully complete the move. It is no small feat for any company.