Multi-cloud is one of today’s biggest buzzwords. Multi-cloud is also a fairly general term being used by many people for many purposes and as such is causing confusion and disagreement about its meaning.
Multi-cloud is a method of leveraging multiple cloud computing platforms for independent or orchestrated tasks. Many businesses may choose several cloud providers to best fit their unique service rather than depending on one single cloud provider. Multi-cloud is different from hybrid cloud because it uses multiple cloud services rather than multiple deployment modes.
The relatively simple use case such as Infrastructure-as-a-Service for Dev/Test workloads; data backup to a single cloud; or a Software-as-a-Service application.
The use case where an application, workload, or data could be run in the same technology stack on-premise (potentially in a private cloud) and in a cloud provider, but where the customer was essentially locked into that technology stack. An example could be moving a VMware workload between an on-premise datacenter and AWS. The workload can be moved back and forth, but remains locked into the VMware technology stack and cannot be easily ported to another virtualization platform such as Microsoft, Red Hat, etc.
The uses cases that enabled true freedom and control to run an application, workload, or data on any cloud – private or public – based on business or technical requirements.
Just as technology stacks are multi-layered and comprise operating system, virtualization/containers, database/storage, applications, etc., so too is the Multi-Cloud multi-layered.
Multi-cloud capabilities can be found in provisioning workloads, capacity management, orchestration and automation, monitoring, cost management, security, data management, and others.