Grigor Khachatryan

Director of Engineering, Platform | LyveGlobal | Los Angeles, CA

What is Cloud Native?

Published December 6, 2022

Cloud-native is the software approach of building, deploying, and managing modern applications in cloud computing environments. Modern companies want to build highly scalable, flexible, and resilient applications that they can update quickly to meet customer demands. To do so, they use modern tools and techniques that inherently support application development on cloud infrastructure. These cloud-native technologies support fast and frequent changes to applications without impacting service delivery, providing adopters with an innovative, competitive advantage.

How does a cloud-native approach benefit businesses?

Organizations gain competitive advantages in various ways when they build cloud-native software applications.

The modern landscape of complex applications — with users expecting continuous innovation and unparalleled responsiveness — requires business systems to be more strategic and increasingly flexible. Cloud-native is all about moving fast while also remaining agile.

Increase efficiency

Cloud-native development includes agile practices like DevOps and continuous delivery (CD). In addition, developers use automated tools, cloud services, and modern design culture to build scalable applications rapidly.

Reduce cost

By adopting the cloud-native approach, companies don’t have to invest in procuring and maintaining costly physical infrastructure. This results in long-term savings in operational expenditure. The cost savings of building cloud-native solutions might also benefit your clients.

Ensure availability

Cloud-native technology allows companies to build resilient and highly available applications. Feature updates do not cause downtime; companies can scale up app resources during peak seasons to provide a positive customer experience.

What is the CNCF?

The Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF) is an open-source foundation that helps organizations kick-start their cloud-native journey. Established in 2015, the CNCF supports the open-source community in developing critical cloud-native components, including Kubernetes.

Read more about CNCF here.

What is cloud-native application architecture?

The cloud-native architecture combines software components that development teams use to build and run scalable cloud-native applications. The CNCF lists immutable infrastructure, microservices, declarative APIs, containers, and service meshes as the technological blocks of cloud-native architecture.

Immutable infrastructure

Immutable infrastructure means the servers for hosting cloud-native applications remain unchanged after deployment. If the application requires more computing resources, the old server is discarded, and the app is moved to a new high-performance server. By avoiding manual upgrades, immutable infrastructure makes cloud-native deployment a predictable process.


Microservices are small, independent software components that collectively perform as complete cloud-native software. Each microservice focuses on a small, specific problem. Microservices are loosely coupled, meaning they are independent software components communicating with each other. Developers make changes to the application by working on individual microservices. That way, the application continues to function even if one microservice fails.


Application Programming Interface (API) is a method that two or more software programs use to exchange information. For example, cloud-native systems use APIs to bring loosely coupled microservices together. API tells you what data the microservice wants and what results it can give you instead of specifying the steps to achieve the outcome.

Service mesh

Service mesh is a software layer in the cloud infrastructure that manages the communication between multiple microservices. Developers use the service mesh to introduce additional functions without writing new code in the application.


Containers are the smallest compute unit in a cloud-native application. They are software components that pack the microservice code and other required files in cloud-native systems. By containerizing the microservices, cloud-native applications run independently of the underlying operating system and hardware. As a result, software developers can deploy cloud-native applications on-premises, on-cloud infrastructure, or hybrid clouds. In addition, developers use containers for packaging the microservices with their respective dependencies, such as the resource files, libraries, and scripts the main application requires to run.

Benefits of containers

Some benefits of containers include:

  • You use fewer computing resources than conventional application deployment
  • You can deploy them almost instantly
  • You can scale the cloud computing resources your application requires more efficiently