What is PaaS? Experts explain growing role in ‘as a service’ family
TechTarget/ Article, Stephanie Mann
Former assistant editor Stephanie Mann shares insights on the increasingly popular but still nascent Platform as a Service (PaaS) delivery model.
The many faces and uses of PaaS
As an example, Rymer pointed out that Amazon Web Services (AWS) is currently the most widely used cloud platform. The catch: AWS isn’t technically a Platform-as-a-Service. “People might take Amazon Web Services and put IBM WebSphere on top of it, or just sign up through a Windows virtual machine and use .NET,” explained Natis. “Since they’re able to be programming in the cloud, they think it must be PaaS.” But having to deal with virtual machines is a characteristic of IaaS, he said. If AWS were truly a PaaS, all of the infrastructure would be hidden.
Such mix-ups may be hindering PaaS adoption rates. “People need to build trust in PaaS,” said Fima Katz, CEO of Exadel, a global software engineering company. “We don’t expect that people are going to switch completely to PaaS right away. What we see is that a lot of people are using PaaS on some portion of their infrastructure. They’re starting to try it and, as soon as they see success, then use it on another application, and so on.”
PaaS on the rise with some big-name backers
Meanwhile, the PaaS market is expanding. Up until late 2012, some of the largest technology players (who may well have been still trying to answer that “What is PaaS” question themselves) had yet to enter the phase, for example, IBM, Red Hat and HP didn’t have PaaS offerings. Today, all three do. But Rymer cautions against the hype surrounding Platforms-as-a-Service as the “next big thing” in cloud computing. “People are sitting back and wait for PaaS to become the biggest of the three,” Rymer said, referring to IaaS, PaaS and SaaS. “Forget it. All of these categories are growing because cloud is on the rise. Rising tides float all boats.”
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