Custom Software Apps & SharePoint Consulting
AWS Lambda Hybrid Cloud

This article will detail how to use the hybrid cloud and AWS services to get a custom app off the ground and quickly and inexpensively.

You’ve got an app that’s so badly outdated it looks like it was cobbled together from tree branches and the hide of a mastodon during the Internet’s Stone Age. You want to bring that ancient app into the 21st Century by transforming it into something sleek and super-desirable.

So you tell your app design team to put on their thinking caps and stick their collective head in the clouds—that glittery dream-zone inside their brains where their creativity can merrily romp on the backs of unbridled unicorns.

But in addition to having their heads in the clouds, they also need to have to their feet firmly planted on the ground.

Thanks to AWS Lambda (along with all the other vital AWS Services from Amazon), your app designers can be fully grounded in the realities of app creation.

In particular, AWS Lambda and AWS Services make it possible for your app designers to write and test code on the cheap.

As a result, they can put together an app concept, give it a mirco-scale try out, tweak the daylights out of the thing until it finally works exactly the way you want, and then make it available to your users after having spent practically nothing shepherding it through the proof-of-concept process.

Hybrid Cloud has Its Virtues

How does AWS Lambda make this possible? Before we answer that question, you should take a look at this cool AWS Lambda explainer article of ours for some essential background.

Basically, though, AWS Lambda and AWS Services help you get your app’s feet off the ground by putting its designer’s head in a different type of cloud—the hybrid cloud, to be exact.

You’re probably already dialed into what the hybrid cloud is. In case you’re not, it’s a virtual environment created by harnessing your physical workstations to a bunch of remote servers that will do the heavy lifting of building out and proving up your app prototypes.

Not to put too fine a point on it, but experts don’t fully agree on the definition of a hybrid cloud. One useful definition comes courtesy of Cloudnexion, which contends you’re talking hybrid cloud if these elements are present: an onsite infrastructure owned by you and connected to cloud resources; a co-location infrastructure connected to the cloud; a managed co-location/hosting infrastructure connected to the cloud; and cloud resources connected to other cloud resources.

However you care to define hybrid cloud, all you really need to know and appreciate is that AWS Lambda and AWS Services put you in it and make your life better when they do. They are the ideal tools for building and testing your apps.

AWS Lambda and AWS Services Save Money

The benefit of using AWS Lambda and AWS Services in the hybrid cloud for app development is you won’t face serious economic consequences for allowing your design team’s imagination to run riot during the entirety of the proof-of-concept phase.

When you use this development scheme, you can expect significant savings. Those savings, in turn, encourage you to innovate more. The idea here is the more you save, the more capital you have available for app R&D (unless, of course, you’re the greedy type who’d rather pocket all that extra coin and blow it on good times in Vegas or iced-out jewelry from HipHopBling’s).

The reason you save money by assembling and testing your app prototypes in a hybrid cloud environment is that you only pay for the resources you use. AWS Lambda and the other AWS Services make sure that’s the case for you.

Faster Build-Out

AWS Lambda lets you build apps faster thanks to the way it reduces the amount of code you need to write.

Call that the economy of coding. Or call it economical coding. Doesn’t matter. The fact is, you save time and effort (and, by extension, money) when you write fewer lines—possible because AWS Lambda enables your use of native services like API Gateway, DynamoDB, SNS, SQS, SES, StepFunctions, Kinesis, Cognito, and more.

There are still other benefits to be gained from using AWS Lambda and AWS Services to build and prove-out your apps.

For starters, Amazon contends that your use of AWS Lambda and AWS Services typically results in the creation of higher-quality apps. For that, you can thank at least in part Amazon’s S3 and Cloudfront content distribution network services (which AWS Lambda enables you to tap into for web app development hosting) and the AWS Device Farm (which permits cloud-integrated tests involving a sizable cohort of real—not virtual or simulated—iOS and Android phones).

Perhaps your curiosity is piqued as to which programming languages and frameworks the AWS collection supports. If so, you’ll be happy to know AWS Lambda and all AWS Services fully support Node, Python 2.7 and 3, Java 8, .NET Core, Go, and pretty much every other popular language or framework.

Early Signs of Success or Trouble

Another big benefit of using AWS Lambda and AWS Services in the hybrid cloud is that they help you know much sooner and far more reliably whether the app you’re working on will be a mega-hit or a total clown-show flop.

That sort of intelligence is useful, no? Yes, it is, because the earlier in the game that you’re able to see where all your efforts will ultimately lead, the faster you can make the right strategic decisions.

Say, for instance, your fledgling app looks like a success-in-the-making. You can use that insight to speedily plan for augmentations and scaling (both of which AWS Lambda and AWS Services make remarkably simple to achieve). If, on the other hand, the app looks like a loser, you can make course corrections or simply cut your losses before you’re in too deep.

You’re able to know what your chances of success are because AWS Lambda and AWS Services promote and facilitate engagement with your target audiences.

For example, through AWS Lambda and AWS Services, you can draw upon the analytics power of Amazon Pinpoint to identify who in your test audience is using your beta and then assess how they’re using it, when they’re using it, and for how long they’re using it.

Just Ask—AWS Lambda/AWS Services Open a Door

However, the one thing Pinpoint won’t do is flat-out tell you what they think of your app. Is it good? Is it bad? What do they like about it? What do they hate? What do they wish was different?

To get the answers to those questions, you need to directly poll your test audience. The way to do that is either via email or with a two-way SMS text exchange. Pinpoint lets you almost effortlessly create email and text queries—the content of which you can vary as desired to request specific feedback.

Speaking of emails and texts, Pinpoint makes it child’s play to issue push notifications. With these, you can run tailored campaigns in support of your new app.

All of this (and more) is accomplished in the server-less environment of the hybrid cloud.

We Can Help You Get Started

So, again, the idea behind AWS Lambda and AWS Services in the context of app proof-of-concept is that you get to put all your focus on making your app truly great instead of worrying about the costs and other non-innovation-related matters.

In a similar vein, you don’t have to worry about costs associated with idle capacity. It’s pay as you go. The only time you incur costs is when your code is running.

Also, if your app idea works, you then can set it up such that scaling occurs automatically (to scale up manually, you check off the amount of memory and throughput you want).

Bottom line: it pays to have your head stuck in the hybrid cloud. AWS Lambda and AWS Services will help your design team get theirs up there, while keeping your feet planted on solid financial ground.

Entrance Consulting can offer you a wealth of additional insights and ideas about how AWS Lambda and all the other outstanding AWS Services can enhance your app projects and get them over the finish line faster while keeping costs way down. Just drop us a line to say hello and let us know you’d like to learn more about AWS Lambda and AWS Services.

Benjamin Smith
Senior Manager @ Entrance
Since 2012, Ben has been helping clients address their most critical needs with great software. He is a proponent of business done the right way; efficient, but full of human connection. As a University of Houston Bauer MBA, he understands both the technological and business sides of any project.
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