What is a cloud-native project or solution?

Cloud-based projects are becoming increasingly cloud-native, involving service meshes, containers, microservices, declarative APIs and immutable infrastructure. We expect entrants into this category to be predominantly involved with cloud-native projects addressing issues with service integration, cloud storage and service management. However, discrete components which have a more holistic view of cloud-native environments are also eligible. The judges will want to see evidence of innovation and success.

A cloud-native project or solution refers to an approach that leverages the full potential of cloud computing technologies and principles to develop and deploy applications and services. Here are the key characteristics and components associated with cloud-native projects:

  • Service Meshes: Cloud-native projects often incorporate service meshes, which provide a dedicated infrastructure layer for managing communication and interactions between services. Service meshes enable capabilities such as traffic management, load balancing, encryption, and observability, enhancing the resilience and scalability of distributed applications.
  • Containers: Containers play a vital role in cloud-native projects, as they encapsulate application components and their dependencies, ensuring consistency and portability across different computing environments. Containers enable efficient resource utilization, simplified deployment, and scalability, facilitating the seamless scaling and management of applications.
  • Microservices: Cloud-native projects adopt a microservices architecture, which involves decomposing applications into smaller, loosely coupled services. Each service focuses on a specific business capability and can be independently developed, deployed, and scaled. Microservices enable agility, scalability, and resilience, facilitating faster development cycles and the ability to adapt to changing business needs.
  • Declarative APIs: Cloud-native projects emphasize the use of declarative APIs, where developers define the desired state of the infrastructure and services, leaving the implementation details to the underlying cloud platform. Declarative APIs enable infrastructure as code (IaC) practices, allowing for automated provisioning, configuration management, and application deployment.
  • Immutable Infrastructure: Cloud-native projects embrace the concept of immutable infrastructure, which means that infrastructure components and configurations are treated as immutable artifacts that are replaced or redeployed rather than modified directly. This approach promotes consistency, reproducibility, and better resilience, as new instances are created from a known good state.

Previous recognition for Best Cloud-Native Project / Solution

For a broader understanding of this Cloud Awards category, we have gathered examples from previous winners, finalists, and shortlistees which impressed the judging team with their innovative cloud-native projects and solutions.

Winner of The Cloud Awards 2022-2023 for the Best Cloud-Native Project / Solution

Lead Judge Richard Geary said:

Cloudastructure’s security monitoring system is a fantastic example of what a cloud-native project can achieve. The ability to live-monitor video feeds, alerting the perpetrator and achieving a 93% deterrence rate and 95% apprehension rate for that remaining 7%, using cloud-based AI, is a phenomenal result. Cloudastructure have really impressed the judges at The Cloud Awards this year. Congratulations on your win! 

Winner of The Cloud Awards 2021-2022 for the Best Cloud-Native Project / Solution

Lead Judge Richard Geary, said:

“The Cloud Awards would like to recognize the hard work, dedication and successful collaboration between Amido, Scotland’s National Health Service-24 and Cancer Central with this award. Developed in just 24 hours and free of charge, this PoC for a chatbot reduced call volume pressure by 50% during the Covid-19 pandemic and serves as a perfect example of how cloud native technologies can improve our world. Congratulations Amido, you should be very proud of what you have achieved.

Finalist of The Cloud Awards 2022-2023 for the Best Cloud-Native Project / Solution

Buoyant’s Linkerd is a leading cloud-native project that addresses service integration and management challenges within the cloud-native ecosystem. Linkerd is a service mesh technology that provides a reliable and secure communication infrastructure for microservices-based applications.

Linkerd implements a service mesh architecture, which facilitates inter-service communication, traffic control, and observability in a cloud-native environment.

Shortlistee of The Cloud Awards 2021-2022 for the Best Cloud-Native Project / Solution

SentinelOne utilizes artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) algorithms to detect and respond to advanced threats in real-time. Their cloud-native solution leverages vast amounts of data to train AI models, enabling accurate and proactive threat detection across various endpoints and cloud-based workloads.

SentinelOne’s cloud-native solution continuously monitors and analyzes the behavior of endpoints and cloud workloads in real-time.

A strong entry for the Best Cloud-Native Project / Solution category should have:

  1. Service Integration: Cloud-native projects address the challenges associated with integrating various services within the cloud environment. They leverage technologies and practices to enable seamless communication, data exchange, and interoperability between different services and systems. This integration ensures cohesive and efficient workflows within the cloud-native ecosystem.
  2. Cloud Storage: Cloud-native projects tackle the effective utilization of cloud storage solutions. They leverage cloud storage services, such as object storage or block storage, to store and manage data securely and efficiently. Cloud-native approaches enable scalable storage solutions that can handle large volumes of data and seamlessly integrate with other cloud-native components.
  3. Service Management: Cloud-native projects focus on managing and monitoring cloud services effectively. They utilize tools, frameworks, and best practices for service discovery, configuration management, health monitoring, and centralized logging. These management capabilities ensure the reliability, performance, and observability of cloud-native applications and services.
  4. Holistic View: While cloud-native projects primarily address specific areas of cloud-native environments, such as service integration, cloud storage, or service management, they can also encompass discrete components that provide a more comprehensive and holistic view of the cloud-native ecosystem. These components may introduce innovative approaches, frameworks, or technologies that enhance the overall efficiency, scalability, or security of cloud-native projects.
  5. Innovation and Success: Cloud-native projects are expected to demonstrate evidence of innovation and success. The judges evaluating entries in this category will look for unique approaches, creative solutions, and measurable outcomes that showcase how the project or solution has advanced the adoption and effectiveness of cloud-native principles. Evidence of successful implementation, business impact, or customer satisfaction will be key factors in assessing the entry.

In summary, a strong entry in the Best Cloud-Native Project or Solution category would showcase innovation, success, and a deep understanding of cloud-native principles and components.

Next Steps to Enter The Cloud Awards

To enter this Cloud Awards category, or any other category in The Cloud Awards, please follow these three simple steps:

  • Download the entry form. Open up the ‘Cloud Awards Simple Form’ document.
  • Complete your form. You only need to complete the form once, even if entering multiple Cloud Awards categories.
  • Submit your entry. Head to the ‘Submit Now’ section on our website, select ‘The Cloud Awards’ and the category/categories you are entering from the list, upload your form and any other materials you would like the judges to review, and process your fees.

Since 2011, The Cloud Awards been helping organizations across the globe gain the recognition they deserve for market-leading innovation in the cloud computing and software sectors.

For a detailed breakdown of all the benefits you receive as an awards entrant as either a shortlistee, finalist or ultimate winner, please see our “Why Enter?” page. The many benefits are replicated across all international awards programs. If you have any questions about this category, please contact us.