The boom of cloud computing has revolutionized the traditional approach to creating software. In part, that’s because it’s opened the door to microservice architecture, which allows for structures that are more modular, scalable, secure and less costly than those built with the classic monolithic architecture.
Historically, organizations designed software and IT services through monolithic architecture. The code was structured in a way that included everything inside the same program. All the components were built as a single code base and deployed as a single file. Without separation between modules, all of the parts were concentrated in the same place. This architecture prevailed for many years although it came with inherent challenges that could become drags on businesses when it came to scaling, maintenance or even innovation.
Monolithic architecture has several important issues, but these are the main drawbacks:
Microservice architecture emerged to address these challenges. But what is it and how can it help companies innovate and reduce costs?
Microservice architecture is a collection of small pieces of code that are all run independently of each other. This allows companies to make changes to their software in a way that’s simple, quick and always available. Likewise, it gives companies the ability to address problems separately, without affecting other processes or having to stop the entire operation. It can even allow companies to create programs based on different programming languages, enabling them to find the best solutions that adjust to market needs.
In a survey by Statista 45% of companies said that their data analysis and business intelligence applications were using microservices in 2021. Leading enterprises like Amazon, Netflix, Uber and Etsy have also opted for the more modular architecture over the classic style. Markets and Markets predict that the microservices market will increase to $1.8 billion by 2023 at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 22.4% from 2018. There is no question that it is a trend to be reckoned with.
The market is defined by users, and competitive edges emerge from learning how to listen to them. Companies that put clients and prospects first and then choose the best technologies to create or innovate, will be the first to reach success.
Advantages of microservice architecture
While there are many reasons to opt for this application development method, here are five of its top benefits:
Since these services work independently, each of the parts can be built and deployed separately from the others. This is great for many reasons, including the fact that an error in one service won’t have an impact on the rest of the system. In other words, it ensures continuity of operations.
Being a modular application, each of the parts can be scaled up horizontally to meet specific computing or processing demands.
Speed and versatility
Microservice architecture can be built with different technologies or programming languages. That means each of the application’s functionalities can be built in the best and most cost-effective way possible, making the operations much more agile.
Using talent to its fullest
By dividing the large tasks into small services, it’s easy to create working groups that operate with small, focused teams. These small teams can keep developing in a way that doesn’t affect the other teams. They can add new functionalities and start testing them on users without having to wait or get approvals. They can also develop new, completely isolated functionalities and run tests independently.
Since microservices are generally smaller, companies can reduce the costs of maintenance or updates. That’s because an update, for instance, can be applied where it’s needed and updating the entire software is no longer required. At the same time, companies can host services on different servers, making the most of free spaces.
And that’s just starting to scratch the surface. Microservice architecture can also be combined with DevOps, a set of practices that combines software development and IT operations. It aims to reduce the systems development life cycle and bring products or services to the market quicker and with more agility. The advantages of combining DevOps with microservices include creating programs and applications more quickly, reducing the time needed to resolve incidents, enhancing security and a more collaborative environment.
How to know if microservice architecture is the right solution for your business
In choosing between microservice or monolithic architecture (or even a combination of the two), the first step is to figure out which solution will help you meet your organization’s needs and business goals.
It may be helpful to consider the following factors. The more statements you agree with, the better the chance that microservices make sense:
It is also key to consider how many final users you have, the number of petitions being processed and peaks in demand.
Regardless of whether your systems are on-premise or in the cloud, open-source or not, at Multiplica, we can help you migrate toward a microservice architecture. To do so, we focus on strategic work that will help your company make its architecture more dynamic.
Transforming monolithic architecture into microservices and staying on the cutting-edge of innovation can be a challenge for most organizations. That’s why we invite you to get in touch with Gerardo Barbosa, our CTO for the Central Region (Spain, Italy, France and Portugal), who can guide you on the path of evolution.