I get often asked: What is the best or easiest cloud platform to start with for data engineering?

Here are my thoughts on this. A general overview.


Market shares

Amazon Web Services (AWS) is globally the biggest cloud provider (approx. 50% of the market). This goes for the US and the EU and so on, except China, because they're not in China. Microsoft Azure is number two on the market.

Google Cloud Platform (GCP) comes in third place regarding market share.


Job Preferences

Generally, when you compare the overall tools and functionalities that are on these platforms, it's most of the time the same. All three named cloud services are almost equivalent. Which one you choose is up to your preferences.

If you work in a company, you should pick the cloud platform they are using. Personally, I like AWS and have worked with AWS. It's a bit different from working on premise.

When you look at the Azure interface and how you set up stuff it's a bit more aimed towards companies who have already worked with on-premise. And have employees who are familiar with on-premise skills and how to set up traditional infrastructures. That's where Azure I think shines a bit more.

If you are looking for a job, do some research on the job ads in your area. What are the requirements in the job descriptions? What are employers looking for? Evaluate and then learn exactly that.

There are high chances that you find a job where you can apply AWS skills - Azure or GCP will be less..


Local and industry preferences

Which cloud provider you should learn also depends on where you are. Look at the regional preferences and make your choice afterwards.

For example, if you're in the US I would look at AWS as it’s the most used there. Students from Norway say that in Norway it's just Azure. Almost nobody uses AWS in Norway for instance. Then it makes sense, if you want to stay in Norway and get a job there, that you'll learn Azure.

The industry in which you are working or aiming to work also influences the cloud service. E. g. Banking, eCommerce or Aeronautics all have special needs and preferences for cloud providers.


Conclusion

You see, it does not matter which is the easiest one to learn, or which one has the best functionality.

You always have to check carefully what cloud provider suits the best for your existing or future job. If you're starting from scratch and you get some cloud experts I would maybe look into AWS more.


See you later.

Andreas