There are many good cloud companies that do a perfectly good job. You click and they deliver a root login to a running instance. All of them are good. Some even have areas where they’re the best. None of them, though, manage to measure up to the breadth and depth of Amazon.
The reason is simple: AWS has built out so many products and services that it’s impossible to begin to discuss them in a single article or even a book. Many of them were amazing innovations when they first appeared and the hits keep coming. Every year Amazon adds new tools that make it harder and harder to justify keeping those old boxes pumping out heat and overstressing the air conditioner in the server room down the hall.
[ Also on InfoWorld: 12 ways Microsoft Azure beats AWS | 11 ways Google Cloud beats AWS ]
For all of its dominance, though, Amazon has strong competitors. Companies like Microsoft, Google, IBM, Oracle, SAP, Rackspace, Linnode, and Digital Ocean know that they must establish a real presence in the cloud and they are finding clever ways to compete and excel in what is less and less a commodity business. These rivals offer great products with different and sometimes better approaches. In many cases, they’re running neck and neck with AWS. And if what you’re after is a commodity machine, well, their commodity Linux instance will run the same code as AWS.
Sometimes the competitors not only match AWS for commodity products, but they actually do a better job. These advantages often appear when the competitors link their cloud to parts of the computer ecosystem that they already dominate. If you want to use .NET code, you’ll find it just a bit easier on Microsoft Azure. If you want to use Google’s G Suite of web-based office productivity tools, it’s no surprise that they’re well-integrated with Google Cloud Platform.