I have been using Alibaba Cloud for a while now, and over the past few years, they have improved their services as well as the interfaces that they offer for the customers to use.
Note: This post is not about the underlying technology of Alibaba Cloud, or when to use Alibaba Cloud over other clouds. This post is about how I have seen Alibaba Cloud teams transition from a more "strict" product to an extensible product, and in this post, I will show some elements that describe this transition well.
A few things that I have experienced and learned include:
- Alibaba Cloud tends to keep things grouped-together; as you see in AWS and GCP.
- Alibaba Cloud sometimes pushes the products as they pass the QA, without spending a second on the interface; which I have always hated about their environment. I think, your product showcases your theme and idea about software, if font mismatches in different frames on the same page, it shows that multiple people were involved in having the software developed and they just shipped as soon as the tests went okay.
- Alibaba Cloud doesn't consider the extensibility of the dashboards/pages as an important part of their overall UX/UI as they should.
I enjoy using Microsoft Azure because I can customize the experience, I can add widgets on the dashboard, I can customize the products and their look-and-feel. Alibaba Cloud did not have this feature, until now! Here are a few changes that you will experience in the recent update.
Alibaba Cloud dashboard has gotten much cleaner and less hardcoded with the values, marketing campaigns, and URL resources. On the previous Alibaba Cloud console, you could find the Alibaba Cloud Tech Share program even a year after it had been closed. Doh. Now, Alibaba Cloud offers recent news and updates on the platform for customers.
More than that, you can also see the spotlight news from the platform, such as new training courses, certificates, etc.
I think this gives a good dashboard experience to the customers who want to learn more on the platform as it is happening.
You can now customize the widgets that you see on the screen, which is a nice update to the portal. You do not have to see through all the details that you do not want to have on the screen. Instead, you can always configure the elements that are important to you.
You can also select from available templates based on your job, this gives you a cleaner, pre-defined set of tools that you will find handy when working on your tasks.
These were just the prominent features that Alibaba Cloud has improved to make it easier for the customers to use the platform for their computing needs.
You can always connect with Alibaba Cloud MVPs and experts to learn more about how you can make the most out of the platform. Reach out to us @ Alibaba Cloud Forum, and someone (maybe me) will be able to guide you better.