There may be a lot of debate on what the best implementation strategy is when implementing a SASS (Software as a Service) web application. We have worked with AWS and Azure to deliver a variety of enterprise applications from web to mobile. Some of Applications even use both platforms to deliver the experience our customers need.
When coming up with a strategy for your application, you should step away from the applications itself. This means you should not look at what type of resources and/or skills you have available at your disposal, and come up with a plan of execution.
For example, when I first started out alone, a background in systems, virtualization, networking, software engineering, and web development. It provided me the foundation needed to get started. Later I discovered there was more to consider then just developing solutions for your customers or your organization. You must have a strategy in place for ongoing development, deployments, customer support, and continued growth for your solutions.
Let’s start by working backwards. At the end of your project you are looking for a solution, but the reality is that your project end is merely a milestone. Within software to build amazing solutions requires continued feedback from the end users consuming the application, and an action plan to deal with the feedback they are giving you.
AWS is an amazing platform, that can provide scalability and give you everything you need implement virtually any solution you can possibly think of. A critical measure to look at is are the development skills and administration competency of yourself or your team. You could spend a lot of time and money coming up to speed on how to administrate your solution.
Azure offers the same type of amazing services, but one thing I experienced is the setup was way easier coming from AWS. After time should truly think, do you I need a dedicated server? If your application is purely web you can look at Azure App Services. Which offers amazing flexibility to deploy staging, and roll outs to production. Offering a in my opinion an amazing perk when working within a variety of web projects.
The other awesome part is when you are first starting your project, depending on what you're creating. The kicker is that you can start for FREE. This is something that has really helped us at ViviScape when tinkering with R&D projects, and coming up with the right methodologies. Azure offers a very seamless development experience and provides the insights development teams need to deliver world-class applications.
Overall depending on your objective, you need to study what features are available from AWS and Microsoft Azure to decide what products are best suited for your solution. In the end, you could find yourself using both depending on what requirements you may need.
Another large area to explore is cost. Be cautious of hidden cost. Both solutions offer to pay for what you use subscriptions and can rack up the bill on production.
Use tools like the AWS Calculator and the Microsoft Azure Calculator to estimate your cost ahead of time. If you are focused on the budget.