Aren’t they just another reporting cube?
No, they are not. Well, then can be modeled to be one, but they are much more.
So, what is special about this new breed of data warehouses?
First – what makes them special:
#1 They separate storage and compute – sounds boring but is a powerful concept that enables high performance and low costs
#2 They have elastic price models. You pay for using it and not just for running an instance. You pay for storage used and your queries.
#3 They have low-to-zero maintenance – your data engineers can focus on useful stuff
Examples: Snowflake, BigQuery, Firebolt or ClickHouse (not AWS Redshift – see #2)
Cloud Warehouses enables us to think data setups in an agile way. We can start small and extend our setup over time without huge upfront investments.
They also enable new ways to work. Skip the data lake and pump everything in the DWH – storage is cheap. Do your transformation in the DWH instead in the pipelines. Make the DWH your central business brain and play back the data into your marketing systems (reverse ETL).