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Every organization is striving to become data-driven. And cloud technology is changing the global business landscape. Alongside that, numerous related fields have also begun to spring up. If you are an advanced analytics-driven enterprise, you must be familiar with the concept of data warehousing. Cloud data warehouses play a pivotal role in storing organizational data from internal and external sources. There are multiple options to choose from and some data warehouses offer more than just storage.

Out of the popular warehousing choices, we have shortlisted two industry favorites: Azure Synapse and Amazon Redshift. In this article, we will take a closer look at their features and compare them objectively to understand which of these two can add more value to your organization.

Key Features of Amazon Redshift & Azure Synapse

Also known as AWS Redshift, Amazon Redshift is a fully-managed data warehouse product used for grand-scale data storage and analysis. It is also used for large scale data warehouse services and database migrations. You can connect Redshift with SQL-based clients and BI tools to make business data available in real-time. It comes with automation capabilities, intelligent optimization, and additional security features.

Much like Redshift, Azure Synapse is also a data warehousing tool with four components: SQL Pool and SQL On-demand, Apache Spark, data integration, ETL and ELT pipelines, and Synapse Studio. It comes with centralized data management capabilities, HTAP implementation, Machine Learning Integration, and data sharing facilities.

A Comparative Study Between Amazon Redshift and Azure Synapse

Among the modern data warehouse platforms, Redshift and Synapse share a lot of similarities. Both offer facilities like columnar storage and MPP architecture. But each of them has its unique features too and comparing them along key factors can help you make better decisions for your organization.

  1. Azure Synapse vs. Amazon Redshift: Pricing and Architecture

    Both Redshift and Azure offer scalable functionalities and flexible pricing packages. Redshift offers 3 types of on-demand nodes with different performance levels at $0.24 to $13.04/hour. For managed storage, the charges begin from $24 per terabyte/month. Please note that these rates are indicative, and the actual rates depend on the region in which Redshift runs.

    Unlike AWS, Microsoft charges for computing and storage resources separately. Synapse's data warehouse units (DWU) are somewhat like AWS nodes; it comprises CPU, memory, and IOPS but not storage. Synapse provides a variety of DWUs at $1.20 to $360/hour. For data storage facilities, the charges are $202.88 per terabyte per month.

  2. Azure Synapse vs. Amazon Redshift: Performance & Administration

    Both Redshift and Synapse Analytics perform well under different workloads and can handle loads for most enterprises with excellent performance. Either platform offers scalable services that require administrator attention. To protect data from accidental deletion, Redshift takes automated incremental snapshots and tracks changes to the cluster.

    Much like Redshift, Synapse too takes automatic snapshots to create restore points that are available for seven days. Snapshot storage costs are calculated during storage allotment for billing purposes. One can restore the warehouse at any point by issuing a restore command.

  3. Azure Synapse vs. Amazon Redshift - Security

    Both Redshift and Azure Synapse offer data encryption and network security. They use AES encryption on data at rest but do not turn on encryption by default. Both AWS and Synapse rely on roles for access to resources. Also, they support multifactor authentication for users.

    However, Synapse offers OAuth 2 for authorized account access which Redshift lacks. Another point of difference is that, in Redshift, permissions apply to entire tables whereas Synapse supports granular permissions on tables, schemas, individual columns, and more.

    Both warehouses provide network security to some extent. With AWS, you can launch a cluster in an Amazon Virtual Private Cloud. Microsoft offers something similar, with its virtual networks.

The Conclusion - Which of The Two Is the Winner?

There can be no one answer to this question. But the short answer is the one that complements your data strategy. Overall, both these platforms are promising and have potential. Now, it is up to you to test your organizational data, run reports, and decide for yourself. Both the platforms offer free trial periods so that you get a firsthand experience of the data solutions that they bring to the table. Still not able to decide what's best for you? Consult now with a reliable software service provider with years of industry experience.

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