Here Are 3 Distinctive Variations Between Serverless and Microservice Designs

If you’re not familiar with the lingo, microservice architecture is an approach to structuring an app as an assemblage of independent services, each with a distinct responsibility. On the other hand, serverless technology is a type of cloud computing that eliminates the need for server management, allowing developers to concentrate on programming. Furthermore, it provides application owners with the ability to only pay for the resources that they utilise. Amazon Web Service’s Lambda is a serverless computing service that could be seen as a microservice. The primary difference between Lambda and a traditional microservice is that Lambda is an event-driven, serverless computing platform, while a microservice is an autonomous service. The choice between using a serverless framework to host microservices or a more conventional hosting solution depends on the application’s specific requirements. In certain cases, serverless frameworks may provide a cost-effective and scalable hosting alternative, while in other situations, a more traditional approach may be more appropriate.

Do you require assistance in locating solutions to such queries? Keep reading!

The definition of microservice architecture is as follows:

Microservice architecture is a design concept that encompasses dividing an app into smaller, autonomous units called services. These services cooperate with one another using basic protocols.

Application capabilities are split into individual ‘microservices’ which communicate and cooperate using Application Programming Interfaces (APIs).

Every microservice undergoes its own comprehensive range of assessments and employs its own resources, including databases, libraries and templates. Additionally, it is typically characterised by a modular architecture.

Since each microservice can operate independently, launching the entire application is not mandatory to utilise a single function.

A music streaming service can be broken down into numerous smaller services, with each one responsible for a specific function such as profile creation, song discovery, playlist management, and playback. If an additional capability is needed, a new microservice can be designed and merged into the system.

If you’re eager to learn more about microservice architecture, how does it work?

Microservices are tiny, self-contained modules that perform a solitary function. Each service manages its own distinct operation and operates independently.

Containers are used to put this concept into practice. Developers frequently build microservices in containers, using existing templates and code libraries. Each container provides the necessary resources and setting for a service to function independently. Docker is the most prevalent tool for creating containers.

To build a microservice architecture, the development team must proceed through the following stages:

  • Decomposition:

    The application’s functionality should be divided into more manageable portions.
  • Design:

    Once the relevant services have been chosen, the connections between them can be designed, and the structure established, deciding which microservices will rely on others and how.
  • Development:

    After the team has constructed a map of microservices and has a comprehensive understanding of how the system’s components will cooperate with one another, the service should be produced.
  • Deployment:

    Implement serverless microservices, isolated virtual machines, or containers as FaaS.

The benefits of microservice architecture are discussed below.

  • Distinct development, testing, and release of services without affecting one another or the primary application.
  • Attain flexibility by working on features and resolving bugs before the program is entirely launched.
  • Performance can be quickly enhanced even during peak times.
  • Capability to adjust business logic and employ diverse technologies.
  • Capable of being modified and reused in various contexts.

What are the challenges associated with microservice architecture?

  • As an application’s features are divided into distinct modules, its complexity increases.
  • Managing multiple databases, ensuring data integrity, and monitoring each microservice require additional effort.
  • Microservices APIs have a risk level four times higher than that of traditional APIs.
  • For smaller organizations that require fast implementation and iteration, microservices may be too slow and complex.
  • In a distributed system, test coverage must be comprehensive, and interface requirements must be more stringent.
  • This comes at a higher cost.

What is serverless technology?

Serverless architecture refers to a technique for developing and deploying web-based applications and services that do not require managing the server infrastructure.

With a serverless architecture, developers can concentrate entirely on writing the code, as the cloud service provider handles security patches, capacity management, scalability, logging, load balancing, and monitoring.

Serverless architecture can be used to run the entire application or a specific section of it. The server is only active when the application is being used, providing access to its resources when the code is executed and releasing them when the application is not in use. The app owner will only be charged when the app is actually being used.

Backend-as-a-Service (BaaS) and Function-as-a-Service (FaaS) are two cloud services that providers may offer. BaaS simplifies the process of creating pre-built features, allowing developers to focus on the user experience. However, due to its limited flexibility and management options, BaaS is not widely used.

Function-as-a-Service (FaaS) offers greater flexibility compared to other alternatives, enabling users to develop applications that include a set of interconnected services. Additionally, with FaaS, each feature can be turned on temporarily and disabled automatically when no longer required.

What purpose does serverless design serve?

By leveraging serverless computing, organizations can delegate the hosting of their application’s functions to third-party providers. Functions are self-contained units that perform a single, well-defined task within the program’s framework. These functions can be invoked repeatedly in response to a stimulus.

Serverless architecture allows you to build applications that are quick to respond to user requests and efficient in terms of memory usage.

Serverless architecture can provide cost, time, and resource savings, making it an excellent option for real-time applications, virtual assistants, and minimum viable products.

To create a serverless architecture, the development team follows the steps below:

  • Functions:

    Developers write code that achieves functional objectives within an application, usually through a simple and speedy process.
  • Event:

    Developers generate an event for each task, which activates the functionalities when the necessary criteria are met. One form of event is an HTTP request to load a web page.
  • Trigger:

    To activate a feature, the user must press a designated key, touch the screen in a specific location, or click a button.
  • Execution:

    At this stage, the function’s execution clock is triggered.
  • Output:

    The client-side application output is utilized to inform users of any updates.

How does serverless computing enhance efficiency?

  • Greater emphasis should be placed on creating high-quality applications that can be released in a timelier manner.
  • Utilizes less energy in the creation, maintenance, and improvement of fundamental infrastructures.
  • Well-suited for immediate processes.
  • In the long run, it is more cost-effective to hire experts in data and server management.
  • Various subscription-based pricing models are accessible, enabling precise financial planning.
  • A rapid, scalable solution that does not compromise on performance.
  • The service provider is responsible for managing all system resources.

What challenges are associated with serverless architecture?

  • Switching to another provider can be difficult if your company’s rationale or technology has been fundamentally altered.
  • Multi-tenant serverless systems may face performance problems when a nearby tenant deploys very intricate code.
  • When a program or process is inactive for an extended period and then activated, it experiences a ‘cold start.’

What are the primary differences between a serverless architecture and a microservice architecture?

The following factors should be considered when choosing between a microservices and serverless architecture.

  1. Methodology

    For effective monitoring, deployment, support, and maintenance of microservices, team resources are required. The team is also responsible for managing the architecture, its computational requirements, and security.

    Serverless architecture depends on an external service provider, eliminating the need for a company to establish, secure and maintain its own server infrastructure. By adopting this approach, the overall cost of the project can be reduced as the cloud service provider is responsible for all administrative tasks.

  2. Expense

    The development and maintenance of microservices can be more expensive due to the need for internal resources and constant staff involvement. However, this approach has several advantages, such as the elimination of the risk of reliance on a single supplier or external entity.

    The adoption of serverless architecture is capable of significantly reducing costs for businesses. By sharing resources, both time and money can be saved. Furthermore, they can enjoy reduced human resource and administrative expenses while still obtaining competitive prices from suppliers.

  3. Execution

    Serverless functions are programmed to execute swiftly and efficiently, with a maximum execution time across all service providers. For instance, AWS Lambda functions can only execute for a maximum of 15 minutes. They are also engineered to be memory-efficient, requiring minimal memory for execution.

    Microservices have no runtime, storage, or RAM constraints imposed by providers, making them a viable solution for more complex, long-term projects that involve handling and processing large data sets.

To sum up

When selecting an architecture, it’s critical to examine both the benefits and drawbacks of serverless and microservices systems to ensure they meet the company’s needs and goals for its products.

If cost reduction and rapid deployment are top priorities, then serverless architecture is a feasible option. However, if there’s a need for an extensive and intricate application, microservices should be evaluated as the preferred alternative.

Alternatively, a combination of the two technologies in a single cloud-native implementation may be achievable with the appropriate resources and workforce.

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  1. Is Lambda a microservice?

    AWS Lambda is accessible to execute serverless applications in the cloud.
  2. Should a serverless framework be used to host microservices?

    When cost-efficiency and deployment velocity are critical, serverless technology is an excellent option. Nevertheless, for developing extensive and complex applications, microservices are the most appropriate choice.

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