Traditionally, businesses have turned to the use of local servers for their hosting needs. More recently, businesses have been transitioning from hosting on local servers to hosting on the cloud, which provides enhanced flexibility compared to local servers.
Cloud computing can also provide organizations with many key advantages, such as financial savings, scalable resources, competitive advantage, high availability, increased security, environmental perks and lightning-fast performance.
Understanding The Differences Between SaaS, PaaS & IaaS
Before moving to the cloud, it is important to gain a solid understanding of the different types of cloud services and their advantages. There are three main models of cloud services from which to choose: Software as a Service (SaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS) and Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS).
How Does Software as a Service (SaaS) Work?
Software as a Service is one of the most popular forms of cloud computing. This software distribution model occurs when a service provider hosts applications on behalf of customers and makes these applications available for customers on the internet. SaaS differs from traditional on-premise software delivery models in several ways.
Pros Of SaaS
SaaS does not require extensive hardware which enables buyers to outsource many of its IT responsibilities. SaaS systems are also paid through a subscription model compared to on-premise software that is usually bought through a license and paid upfront.
Software as a Service has several unique characteristics that separate it from other models of cloud services. It is managed from a central location, accessible over the web, hosted on a remote server and users are not responsible for updates on software or hardware.
Although SaaS can be useful in many situations, it is highly beneficial for small businesses, startups, short-term projects and applications that require both web and mobile access.
Cons Of SaaS
One of the biggest concerns addressed when using SaaS refers to safety and security. SaaS providers use highly-secure public cloud services to store data, making the cloud less risky than in-house storage. SaaS is based on a web delivery model that eliminates the need for applications to be downloaded and installed on individual computers. Instead, vendors can manage all technical aspects, including servers, data, storage and maintenance from a remote location.
How Does Platform as a Service (PaaS) Work?
Platform as a Service is another common type of cloud computing in which an application software platform and hardware is provided by another party. With PaaS, users can develop, run and manage applications without having to build or maintain the platform or infrastructure.
Instead, a PaaS provider is responsible for hosting the software and hardware on its own infrastructure and delivering a platform to users as a service through an internet connection, solution stack or as an integrated solution.
Benefits Of PaaS
There are many key benefits of using PaaS, including less coding time. The use of PaaS development tools can help reduce the amount of time it takes to code new applications using pre-coded components which are built into the platform. Many service providers also provide development options for multiple platforms, such as computers and mobile devices, making cross-platform apps fast and easy to develop.
How Does Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) Work?
Infrastructure as a Service is another form of cloud computing that delivers to users, virtualized computing resources on the web. In an IaaS model, a cloud provider handles all aspects of IT infrastructures, such as server, networking and storage resources.
These IT infrastructures are then delivered to subscribers over virtual machines that are accessible via the internet.
Benefits Of IaaS
There are numerous benefits associated with using IaaS, such as making workloads easier, faster, cost-efficient and more flexible. IaaS providers also offer a range of services, such as monitoring, detailed billing, load balancing, security, log access, clustering and storage resiliency. This type of cloud model is best suited for workloads that are experimental, temporary or are likely to change unexpectedly.
Payment for IaaS services can range among providers. Some IaaS providers charge based on the amount of virtual machine space that an organization uses. Others offer a pay-as-you-go model or pay on a per-user model that is usually charged on an hourly, weekly or monthly basis.
How To Choose A Cloud-Based Service Model
Although SaaS, PaaS and IaaS have certain similarities, these models are distinct in many ways. For businesses considering a switch to the cloud, it is important to understand the differences between the models and weigh the pros and cons based on the unique needs and preferences of the organization. Each of these cloud computing models offers organizations flexibility and diverse options that on-premise hosting cannot provide.
SaaS offers an out-of-the-box, ready-to-use solution that meets a specified business need, such as a website. PaaS is often used to reduce the need for system administration and focus on app development. IaaS aims to provide maximum flexibility when hosting custom-built apps and create a data center for information storage.
When deciding between SaaS vs PaaS vs IaaS, it is also important to note there is no right or wrong answer. Each organization has its unique cloud computing needs, and as a result, it can be difficult to make a decision. It is advised to speak with a custom software development company or a similar organization to determine which is best for your business and its employees.
Work With An Experienced Custom Software Development Company
SaaS, PaaS and IaaS can all be highly advantageous cloud-based models for the modern business. To learn more about these cloud-based service models or to speak with an experienced custom software development company, reach out to the custom software developers at Orases today by calling 301.756.5527 or by requesting a consultation online.