Cloud services: SaaS vs PaaS vs IaaS
Nowadays, understanding how cloud technology enables fast scalability, high flexibility, availability, market agility, reliability, cyber security and bigger cost savings is an essential part of most every business decision.
In a previous post detailing Cloud migration, we outlined the main Cloud services in use and what type of operations are usually hosted by cloud services providers.
Let’s take a closer look now, to gain a better understanding of what Cloud services really are and how they reduce costs and grow revenues.
SaaS, PaaS, IaaS and XaaS. Welcome into the everything-as-a-service era!
The 3 main types of cloud services, already detailed: IaaS (infrastructure as a service), PaaS (platform as a service) and SaaS (software as a service) are called cloud computing stack, because they build on top of one another and can be figured as layers, as in the diagram below.
According to the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), there are some essential features for a service to be considered part of the Cloud:
- On-demand self-service – The ability for an end user to sign up and receive services without the long delays that have characterized traditional IT
- Broad network access – Ability to access the service via standard platforms
- Resource pooling. Resources are pooled across multiple customers
- Rapid elasticity – Resources are pooled across multiple customers
- Measured Service – Capability can scale to cope with demand peaks
But cloud computing has also widened to include a range of solutions called as-a-service, some of them evolved from the formers) such as: FaaS (function as a service), DaaS (desktop as a service), STaaS (storage as a service), CaaS (containers as a service) and more.
XaaS is a general term to fully describe cloud services delivery models and it stands for anything as a service, where X is a variable. When SaaS, PaaS and IaaS emerged, businesses were able to get these services on demand and pay for only what they use, removing the high cost of hardware, software and infrastructure ownership.
Benefits of XaaS
The rapidly growing of XaaS solutions is given by its capability to innovate, disrupt and change businesses. XaaS concept marks a new era in the Cloud Technology in which each tool, function or system will going to be delivered as a service. In addition to the already known solutions (SaaS, Paas, IaaS), XaaS will provide: storage, cyber-security systems, back-up and disaster recovery solutions.
The benefits of Anything-as-a-service are plentiful and we’ve highlighted a top 5 to help you understand what your organization stands to gain by going for cloud migration:
- Cost savings and optimization: First off, the investment in cloud – based services (capital equipment expenses) is undoubtedly less than an in-house solution. The cost to maintain the system is eliminated, as your cloud provider is responsible for the maintenance.
- Scalability & flexibility Any cloud service is provided according to the required needs of each business and it is able to adapt and update to the new demands by growing resources efficiently and quickly. Downgrading and upgrading are easy and fast, as XaaS enables both horizontal and vertical scaling. With XaaS, businesses of all sizes can access up-to-dates and remain competitive on the market.
- Business Innovation: The use of XaaS solutions enable the company to become more reactive to changes and improves the business acceleration.
- Greater Agility: The implementation of any XaaS solution become very fast, so the focus will go more on the goals rather than on technical problems. Therefore, the agility of the system will increase.
- Higher Quality and security – The XaaS users can save all the documents in one space and in a more structured way, making it easy for everyone to access. This feature offers consistency in data and also eliminates the human errors that may occur. Also, with XaaS solution, any information can be accessed immediately, even if a disaster happened (fire, hurricane). The company can be sure their information is safely kept and backed up.
How can you know everything about anything-as-a-service? Choosing the right XaaS
There are now so many XaaS application over the world and their number are increasing while cloud technologies raise. It’s a challenging for any enterprise to choose which cloud service should be used in a given project. Choosing the right XaaS for your business depends on what your intended use is.
An end-user who needs access to basic functionality only, will most probably chose a SaaS model. SaaS applications are delivered via Internet by a third party, the vendor, directly to you. The service provider is responsible for the configuration of the hardware and software needed.
A software developer will go for the PaaS. This model usually allows the sharing of resources across many teams, avoiding the need for wasteful distribution of multiple assets of the same type in separate silos. PaaS systems can be used to build applications that are then offered to other users as a software as a service (SaaS) offering.
Here you can see an example of disruptive innovation solution via PaaS, developed by RINF TECH.
IaaS is the most flexible cloud service type which provides instant access to computing, storage, and network solutions to its users. IaaS allows organizations the same capabilities and technology of an on-premise data center to create scalable, cost-effective IT solutions without having to purchase the hardware outright or manage it all.
SaaS, PaaS, IaaS, what’s next? Merry XaaS: AaaS is coming!
While SaaS, PaaS, IaaS and other cloud models are gaining popularity, a new concept, the future of XaaS, is emerging and it seems to become a megatrend in the forthcoming years.
Automation as a Service? Yes, please
The increasing demand for automation, as well as the accessibility of cloud-based solutions and rise of AI, IoT and robotics led to the development of another “as-a-Service” type that’s quietly starting to disrupt the tech industry: Automation as a Service
Enterprise level of automation can now be granted through the cloud as a service, enabling end users to earn fully managed solutions via their cloud platform. AaaS enables enterprises to form virtual labor force, which is capable of performing several tasks with high productivity, removing the need for human intervention. It offers high scalability and reduces operational cost by 25–50%, as virtual workforce has the capability to work round the clock.
While humans and machines will not be self-reliant to drive business advance in the future, successful enterprises will be those that know how to merge the two effectively.
The global automation as a service market is estimated to raise at a tremendous rate in the next decade. According to a McAfee report, the global automation as a service (AaaS) market was valued at $2.9 billion in 2017, and is expected to generate $10.9 billion revenue by 2023.
Stay tuned for the next post in our series which will be an essential guide to Application modernization and for more tech-based topics, head back to the insights.
If you are looking for innovative cloud solutions that drive your business growth make sure to contact us.