Similar to a data lake, a data warehouse is a repository for business data. However, unlike a data lake, only highly structured and unified data lives in a data warehouse to support specific business intelligence and analytics needs. Think of it like an actual warehouse, where contents are first processed, then organized into sections and onto shelves (called Data Marts). Data from a warehouse is ready for use to support historical analysis and reporting to inform decision making across an organization’s lines of business.
A cloud data warehouse is a database stored as a managed service in a public cloud and optimized for scalable BI and analytics. It removes the constraint of physical data centers and lets you rapidly grow or shrink your data warehouses to meet changing business budgets and needs.