What is the difference between the cloud, cloud computing, cloud services, and cloud platforms?

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Let’s understand the cloud, cloud computing, cloud service, and cloud platform.

"Cloud system" is a blanket term for a system that includes clouds, cloud computing, cloud services, and cloud platforms. They are related to each other, but each represents a different concept.

What is the cloud?

The concept of the cloud involves delivering computing resources, data storage, software, platforms, and other IT services remotely as a web-based service. The cloud is the most basic layer and it encompasses a wide range of things, from cloud computing to cloud services and cloud platforms.

What is cloud computing?

Cloud computing collectively refers to computing services provided through the Internet; a technology that performs computing work with the cloud. Cloud computing is any technology that allows users to access cloud-based computing resources (e.g., CPU, RAM, and storage) and pay for scalable resources on a pay-per-use basis. Cloud computing is offered as Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), or Software as a Service (SaaS), as a subordinate layer in the cloud.

What are cloud services?

Cloud services refer to service models provided based on cloud computing. Cloud services are available across various fields, including computing, database, storage, network, security, analysis, and artificial intelligence. It is a layer that provides a variety of services with specific features that users can select to meet their needs within the cloud computing layer. Cloud services are usually classified into IaaS, PaaS, and SaaS, and they exist as another subordinate layer of cloud computing. These cloud services are offered by cloud service providers, such as Amazon, Microsoft, Google, and Samsung SDS.

What is a cloud platform?

A cloud platform refers to a base system that acts as an infrastructure and software platform that provides cloud services. A cloud platform exists as a subordinate layer inside cloud services, providing multiple types of cloud service models (IaaS, PaaS, and SaaS) and building the environment for users to use these services. Especially with cloud platforms, a variety of third-party products are available as well. There are various cloud platforms, such as Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud Platform, and Samsung Cloud Platform (SCP).

What is the relationship between the cloud, cloud computing, cloud services, and cloud platforms?

If you described a cloud system in a diagram, it could be explained as follows:

1. Draw a big circle. This indicates the "cloud".
2. Draw the second circle inside the "cloud" circle. This is "cloud computing", and it symbolizes cloud-based computing resources.
3. Draw the third circle inside the "cloud computing" circle. This is "cloud service", and it stands for various cloud-based services (IaaS, PaaS, and SaaS).
4. Finally, draw small circles or squares inside the "cloud service" circle. These represent each "cloud platform". Each platform provides certain services (IaaS, PaaS, or SaaS).

Cloud > Cloud computing > Cloud services > Cloud platform

The diagram shows the hierarchical relationship between the cloud, cloud computing, cloud service, and cloud platform. This diagram describes a structure where each domain, from the big circle (the cloud) to the small ones (cloud platforms), includes and specifies superordinate concepts.

Shall we consider the cloud system in a hierarchical structure?

You can draw an analogy between a cloud system and a four-story building.

First floor - The cloud
: This floor represents the basic components of the cloud. Computing resources, such as servers, storage, and networks, are located here. This floor is the foundation for the building, and it is also a basis for the next floor, cloud computing.

Second floor - Cloud computing
: This floor is a technology that works on cloud infrastructure, which is in charge of virtualizing, allocating, and managing computing resources. Cloud computing works as a structure of the building and is used to implement core features of the next floors: Cloud services and cloud platforms.

Third floor - Cloud services
: This floor includes various services (IaaS, PaaS, and SaaS) implemented with cloud computing technologies. Cloud services, like service facilities on each floor of the building, provide features that users can select and utilize.

Fourth floor - Cloud platform
: This floor is the infrastructure that provides cloud services. The cloud platform manages all the facilities of the building, allowing users to enjoy stable, efficient cloud environments. The cloud system which is likened to a four-story building, allows users to effectively use necessary features and resources.

The cloud system provides computing resources remotely to users, manages the resources, and offers various services. This contributes to more effective, flexible computing environments for users.