Why the Future is Best-of-Breed Multicloud

October 19, 2022By Drew Schlussel

The best-of-breed vs. single-source provider debate has been with us since the early days of IT. Today, it is playing out in the cloud. When you think of the cloud hyperscalers like AWS, Google or Azure, cloud storage may or may not be the first thing you think of. That’s because each of these juggernauts market a variety of related (and many unrelated) products and services to deliver the ultimate one-stop-shop experience to their customers. For IT professionals, the ability to get compute, storage, backup and recovery, enterprise software, professional services, and a myriad of other products from a single source may be the epitome of convenience. But that convenience can come with tradeoffs in features or product quality that may not align with their business goals down the road. Worse, what appeared like the most convenient and cost-effective choice may ultimately cost more in the long run, and lock organizations into a solution or ecosystem that no longer meets their needs.

The downside of one-stop shop convenience

Trying to do everything well is akin to trying to make everybody happy. It can’t be done, even with hyperscaler-sized coffers. It boils down to simple math. When you focus on just one thing, one hundred percent of your resources and budget–all of your intellectual capital and every waking moment–is spent on that one thing. Add another product and you would need to double the amount of resources needed to maintain that same level of focus. When you consider the ever-expanding size and scope of hyperscaler portfolios, this resource-to-focus ratio deficit grows exponentially with each new product or service.

Focus is how best-of-breed newcomers are typically able to innovate faster or provide deeper, more personalized levels of customer service than their larger, multi-focused competitors. Because storage is all we do, Wasabi was not only able to develop a revolutionary new cloud object storage service with breakthrough price-performance, but rapidly develop and nurture a thriving ecosystem of more than 300 technology alliance partners.

The value triangle says you can’t have it all

Whether you choose to go with a best-of-breed innovator or a one-stop-shop hyperscaler, you are entering into a tradeoff decision known as the value triangle. The traditional project management value triangle lists quality, cost, and speed as three opposing values that are critical in business decision making. They are opposing values because you can only have two. For example, you can have quality and have it quickly, but it’s going to cost more. You can have a service developed quickly at low-cost, but at the expense of quality.

Adapting the value triangle to our hyperscaler vs. innovator cloud conversation, it would be appropriate to swap “speed” with “convenience.”

value triangle

When organizations choose a hyperscaler for compute, storage, and any number of other cloud products and services, they are effectively prioritizing convenience and cost over quality, making the conscious decision to compromise on certain feature sets for the promise of a convenient, simpler transaction at a lower cost than an alternative solution. In reality, however, many hyperscaler cloud customers have experienced spiraling out-of-control cloud costs. These customers can then feel “locked in” by the vendor, whether due to expensive egress fees for migrating their data out of their cloud, or because so many of their applications and systems are tied to this one cloud vendor, making it cumbersome and costly to switch. Prioritizing hyperscaler convenience over best-of-breed quality can come with significant opportunity costs (and actual costs), especially if the customer does not consider the longer-term impact that this decision can have on related business initiatives or their overall cloud strategy.

Build a better solution with best-of-breed components

As an amateur audiophile, I can relate to this dilemma. You could purchase a turntable, speakers and integrated amplifier from a single manufacturer, but are you getting the very best components for your particular needs and budget? One brand may manufacture great amplifiers, but their turntable or speakers may not be as good. And if everything is top-of-the line, it’s going to cost a lot more money for the convenience of purchasing everything from the same place. You lose the flexibility of picking and choosing the exact components to fit a particular audio preference and budget requirements.

This is precisely why so many audio enthusiasts prefer to build their sound systems from best-of-breed components. They want the flexibility to pick and choose the best components for their money from the experts in their respective industries. You could select a turntable from a brand known only for quality turntables, an amplifier from another, and speakers from one of the dozens of incredible options on the market. Together, these separate components provide the greatest overall listening experience for a particular taste and budget by having the flexibility to work with individual experts in each specific field and shifting budget spend to the features that matter most to you.

Enter the best-of-breed multicloud

Going back to our cloud conversation, many organizations are opting for a multiple cloud (or multicloud) IT strategy despite the convenience of a one-stop shop. In fact, multicloud is quickly becoming the standard in IT across the globe. According to Flexera’s 2022 State of the Cloud Report, 89% of respondents surveyed said they have a multicloud strategy. Likewise, survey data from IDC shows 64% of respondents indicate they use multiple public cloud providers for IaaS solutions (IaaSView, Oct. 2021).

While there are several drivers that can explain the increase in multicloud adoption, there are two prevalent themes:

  • Based on specific feature sets and options, some cloud services are better suited for certain industries, applications, and use cases than others.

  • Most IT decision makers don’t like to be locked in or limited in what they can do. The need for flexibility to drive innovation and competitive differentiation outweighs all other factors.

When it comes to cloud object storage, we are finding that organizations are gravitating to best-of-breed providers like Wasabi in order to address the exponential growth and expense of storing unstructured data. Our singular focus on cloud storage has enabled us to deliver a simple, single tier of highly performant, enterprise-class storage that is 1/5th the price of the hyperscalers. On top of that, we don’t charge for egress or API requests. That means that our customers are able to easily predict and plan their monthly or annual storage costs. The fact that they can access their data without being penalized with additional fees opens up economical new use cases, such as active archiving, remote collaboration, and video post-production in the cloud.

Wasabi does just one thing–cloud storage

Wasabi created the market’s fastest growing pure-play cloud object storage by focusing one hundred percent on what the market was missing and what our customers needed in a storage solution. In turn, a pure-play storage provider like Wasabi helps to nurture and accelerate a healthy ecosystem of best-of-breed cloud software and service partners that are best at what they do.

Our technology alliance partners deliver world-class enterprise and niche solutions for backup and recovery, archiving, compute, data management, video surveillance, and media management, among others. They don’t have to worry that Wasabi will suddenly compete with them in their markets. And, they are able to add Wasabi’s revolutionary value proposition to their own products, include features such as immutable storage for ransomware protection at no additional cost, and sell our joint solution at a fraction of the cost of the hyperscalers. This “better-together” formula with our strategic technology alliance partners delivers best-in-class integrated and validated solutions to bring choice and flexibility to a market that has, for too long, been forced to accept the terms and offerings dictated to it by the hyperscalers.

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