The cloud computing market has been growing rapidly over the past several years and will continue to grow. The numbers generated by IDC are proof of this as they predict that worldwide spending on public cloud services is expected to cross $141 billion by 2019. The IaaS sectors and the PaaS sectors which are called “cloud infrastructure” markets are predicted to see $173 billion growth by 2026. Enterprises who are making the shift to cloud are benefitting with on-demand computing power, pay-as you go features, easy scalability, use of the latest technology etc. which gives them a competitive advantage in their respective industries.
The IaaS, PaaS, SaaS puzzle
Infrastructure as a service, as the expansion suggests, is a cloud infrastructure offering that allows accessing, monitoring, and managing remote datacenter infrastructures, such as storage, networking, and networking services. This allows the user to buy their hardware requirements based on consumption rather than buy it outright.
Platform as a service is a cloud platform service that provides cloud components that are used by applications and software for development. This makes development, testing and deployment of applications quick,easy and cost effective for the user. In a PaaS setup the provider manages the servers, storage OSes, virtualization and networking. The user manages the applications.
Software as a service is a cloud application service and the most popular and widely used cloud service. In this case the software is provided to the user by the SaaS provider and is accessible from anywhere using a web-browser. Due to its web delivery model, SaaS does not require any installation or setup of individual computers to run the software.
aPaaS vs PaaS – What’s the difference?
In the pre-cloud era, “middleware” was the term used to describe the software that enabled communication and management of data in distributed applications. Infrastructure and applications were the first to be available on the cloud in the form of Infrastructure as a Service or IaaS (e.g. Amazon Web Services) and Software as a Service or SaaS (e.g. Salesforce).
Later, middleware services too was available in the cloud. But middleware constitutes a lot of things like application development, application deployment, integration services, identity services and other platform services. All these services are lumped together under Platform as a Service or PaaS (e.g. Heroku). In this context, those services that primarily offer application development and deployment are referred to as application Platform as a Service or aPaaS (e.g. WaveMaker RAD Platform) while PaaS refers to entire spectrum of middleware as a service offerings.
Advantages of Cloud Application Platforms
With cloud application platforms, users have access to the software at all times.They are available to the user as long as they have a stable internet connection and can access the software at any time using a web browser.
- Innovative Technology
Enterprises using cloud application platforms are exposed to the latest technology on offer and that gives them a competitive advantage in creating the next big thing or to claim market share over their competitors.
Cloud application platforms are exposed to data and are integrated with APIs which can be accessible using applications on a user’s phone, or mobile device at any point in time. This enables users to carry their work with them and can access applications at any time.
With cloud application platforms, users can collaborate and share content or develop applications. This capability allows the clients to be involved in projects and can reduce time-to-market and improve product development and customer service.
Enterprises can customize their cloud requirements based on their need. For instance, more capacity can be provisioned during peak times and de-provisioned during off peak times. In the case of traditional methods, enterprises would end up in investing in large capacity servers and storage which will end up sitting idle during off peak times.
- Cost and risk
Enterprises save on millions of dollars before receiving an ROI when they opt for a cloud application platform.Enterprises do not invest in physical servers and data centers as in the case of traditional computing thus reducing the cost and the risk.
WaveMaker Platform: the go-to platform for cloud application development
WaveMaker RAD Platform is one such aPaaS platform that is based on Rapid Application Development. The combined benefits of RAD and application Platform as a Service have a direct bearing on the cost and schedule of enterprise application development.
The WaveMaker platform offers:
- Visual Development:
Drag-and-drop UI creation for faster development and change management
- Easy Integration:
Connect to databases, APIs, web services and data siloed in legacy systems
- Multi-device Support:
Create responsive web applications and hybrid mobile apps so that applications are available across all devices and form factors
- Extensive Customization:
- Docker container technology
Quicker and seamless provisioning of containers for apps built. Giving ease to create development and testing environments.
- Instant Deployment:
One-click deployment and option to run on-premise and in private and public clouds
- UI Templates:
Provides a library of out-of-the-box web and mobile templates to jumpstart application’s UI development
- Granular Security:
Ability to integrate with popular authentication providers and control authorization at different levels
Organizations that used WaveMaker aPaaS have experienced: