All That You Must Know About SaaS, PaaS and IaaS - A Quick Comparison

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Krishna Kumar Emani

Published on February 13, 2017


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Cloud computing is an evolving concept in the world of IT. Apparently, the entire concept emerged out of necessity to be able to access software on the go. The need for a mobile availability of software has revolutionized the world of could computing.

Ever experienced the comfort and ease of using a service based out of the cloud platform? Most of us are aware of the benefits that cloud services provide - flexibility in usage and cost efficiency as there is no need of installing the software, investing in services, servers, and platforms.

Certain service providers specifically specialize in catering exclusively to enterprises. Through a network the enterprise cloud delivers the necessary platform, software or the required infrastructure services. The cloud services enable organisations to operate and use the computing services in a secured and controlled manner as the cloud infrastructures make use of a fire wall. 

Leading organisations in the healthcare, government agencies who document and manage sensitive data prefer to opt for enterprise cloud services instead of the public cloud.

Cloud computing supports the varying needs of computer users, its architecture is designed with different adaptable features and the cloud addresses three main areas of operation:

  • SaaS (software-as-a-service)
  • PaaS (platform-as-a-service)
  • Iaas (infrastructure as a service)

The cloud offers both business advantage and huge monetary benefit as the service offers computing, storage and applications as a service.

Cloud services help organisations accomplish computing capabilities, by accessing the software from the cloud. Applications and software can be accessed through the browser and there is no need for expensive installation of numerous software applications.

SaasPaas

SaaS: Software as a Service

The cloud application service or Software as a service (SaaS) forms the largest cloud market and is growing at a rapid pace to keep up with the demand. SaaS allows the end uses to access the services through the Web and interacts with the customers through an interface. The fact that most of the applications can be accessed through a web browser makes SaaS so much more popular. With SaaS, you don’t need to worry about installing or downloading although some applications might require a plug-in.

Enterprises find it easy to streamline their maintenance and support with SaaS, as vendors can manage all the information and support and ensure that the functioning of the application is smooth. Several applications hosted as SaaS are quite popular in sectors relating to health care, email and collaboration, etc.

Some big companies that are not traditionally known to be software vendors have started building SaaS as an additional source of revenue to gain a competitive advantage. To keep up with the market and gain massive traction, enterprises are now embracing SaaS to generate additional revenue, even though the enterprises were not primarily operating as software vendors.

 PaaS: Platform as a Service

PaaS is a framework most preferred by developers as they can customize and develop applications. The Platform as a Service (PaaS) or the Cloud Platform Service is quite popular, and it is used to develop applications and provide cloud components to software. By opting to work with the cloud-based platform, a lot of logistic issues are taken care of—the development, testing of the applications, and deployment are quite quick, easy, and cost-effective.

The enterprise PaaS allows efficient maneuvering and helps manage the computing infrastructure from a centralized IT center with the help of the platforms that are present on the hardware.

You can effectively create customized applications through the software components that are inbuilt into PaaS. The applications that use PaaS inherit the characteristics that are unique to the cloud infrastructure. For instance, the applications will show prominent cloud features like multi-tenancy, PaaS enablement, scalability, etc. The benefits that PaaS offers to enterprises are many—it provides a huge respite from extensive coding, allows to automate business policies, and enables the easy transition of apps to hybrid models.

IaaS: Infrastructure as a service

Infrastructure as a service (IaaS) is a self-service model built specifically to provide Cloud Infrastructure Services to help with accessing, monitoring, and managing remote data centre infrastructures. IaaS assists with essential infrastructure-related functionalities like storage, establishing effective firewalls, networking, etc.

One important differentiator is the fact that with IaaS, the users drive and manage the applications and software. The service providers handle the intricate details revolving around the servers, storage, networking, and virtualization. Additionally, several IaaS providers offer services related to providing messaging queues and databases. Users of IaaS specifically gain the advantage of having the ability to install any platform over the infrastructure. However with IaaS, users need to take care of updating the software if new updated versions of the software are released.

Cloud computing preferred by enterprises.

Instead of investing in the entire hardware, the facility can be used ad hoc, and the users can now pay for the services per usage. This concept works in favour of the enterprises, and it's beneficial as well because it is cost efficient, and the services can be procured only when needed. Cloud Computing has several advantages and is trusted by leading established enterprises. With this sector witnessing massive improvement and evolution, new and enhanced features of cloud computing are bound to attract a huge clientele in the coming years. 

About the Author

Krishna is an IaaS cloud expert and is associated with Arcserve. Leading the cloud service provider division, Krishna’s main responsibilities include development, implementation, and management of Cloud Data centres. He is certified in VCP, Google Cloud Certified System Operations, Red Hat, and MCSE.


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