What Is PaaS - Advantages and Disadvantages | Cloud Computing | CompTIA (2024)

What Is PaaS - Advantages and Disadvantages | Cloud Computing | CompTIA (1)Programmers want to focus on code – not on building and maintaining infrastructure. That’s why platform as a service (PaaS) is so incredibly popular. Offered via a cloud service provider’s hosted infrastructure, PaaS users are traditionally able to access a software development platform via a web browser. Easy access to a suite of development tools means programmers can program – and businesses can quickly deploy new applications.

It sounds like a win-win, but top talent with cloud computing skill sets and experience is still hard to find. Learning how to analyze, evaluate and design cloud computing solutions requires a fundamental understanding of the different components commonly used in cloud computing solutions.

Common types of cloud computing offerings include the following:

  • Infrastructure as a service (IaaS)
  • Software as a service (SaaS)
  • Platform as a service (PaaS)

PaaS can take a company to the next level as it allows organizations to automate backend processes and provides the necessary building blocks to respond to demand. Read on to learn exactly what PaaS is, the benefits it offers an organization, the challenges it may present along with common examples and emerging tech.

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Platform as a Service (PaaS) Defined

PaaS is a cloud computing service that uses virtualization to offer an application-development platform to developers or organizations. This platform includes computing, memory, storage, database and other app development services. PaaS solutions can be used to develop software for internal use or offered for sale.

PaaS technology offers a company virtual infrastructure, such as data centers, servers, storage and network equipment, plus an intermediate layer of software, which includes tools for building apps. Of course, a user interface is also part of the package to provide usability.

Customers can deploy PaaS in one of three different cloud deployment models defined by the National Institute of Standards Technology (NIST) as follows:

  • Private Cloud: The development platform is built on infrastructure that is provisioned for exclusive use by a single organization comprising multiple consumers. The infrastructure may be owned, managed and operated by the organization, a third party or some combination, and it may exist on or off premises.
  • Public Cloud: The development platform is built on infrastructure provisioned for use by multiple organizations (also known as a multi-tenant model). The infrastructure may be owned, managed and operated by a business, academic or government organization, or some combination. It exists on the premises of the cloud provider.
  • Hybrid Cloud: The development platform is built across both public cloud and private cloud. The two cloud models remain unique entities but are bound together by standardized or proprietary technology that enables data and application portability. Hybrid cloud is rarely used for PaaS solutions.

Advantages of PaaS Technology

PaaS works well for small businesses and startup companies for two very basic reasons. First, it’s cost effective, allowing smaller organizations access to state-of-the-art resources without the big price tag. Most small firms have never been able to build robust development environments on premises, so PaaS provides a path for accelerating software development. Second, it allows companies to focus on what they specialize in without worrying about maintaining basic infrastructure.

Other advantages include the following:

  • Cost Effective: No need to purchase hardware or pay expenses during downtime
  • Time Savings: No need to spend time setting up/maintaining the core stack
  • Speed to Market: Speed up the creation of apps
  • Future-Proof: Access to state-of-the-art data center, hardware and operating systems
  • Increase Security: PaaS providers invest heavily in security technology and expertise
  • Dynamically Scale: Rapidly add capacity in peak times and scale down as needed
  • Custom Solutions: Operational tools in place so developers can create custom software
  • Flexibility: Allows employees to log in and work on applications from anywhere

Challenges of PaaS Technology

There are always two sides to every story. While it’s easy to make the case for PaaS, there’s bound to be some challenges as well. Some of these hurdles are simply the flip side of the positives and the nature of the beast. Others can be overcome with advanced planning and preparation.

Challenges may include the following:

  • Vendor Dependency: Very dependent upon the vendor’s capabilities
  • Risk of Lock-In: Customers may get locked into a language, interface or program they no longer need
  • Compatibility: Difficulties may arise if PaaS is used in conjunction with existing development platforms
  • Security Risks: While PaaS providers secure the infrastructure and platform, businesses are responsible for security of the applications they build

Read More About Cloud Security

  • Your Cloud Solutions Deserve Zero-Trust Networking
  • Managing the Complexities of Cloud Computing
  • Moving to the Cloud: IT Infrastructure and Cybersecurity Skills Required
  • Shared Responsibility: 3 Cybersecurity Tips for Working with Cloud Vendors

Implementing PaaS Technology

Before making the decision to go live with a PaaS product, IT pros should plan ahead. For instance, making the switch to PaaS while in the middle of a large project could result in delays. Make sure you hit your deadlines by implementing PaaS in between launches.

Additionally, workflow changes are bound to happen. Once a PaaS product is deployed, IT pros are tasked with ensuring everyone is up to speed and understands the new process. Finally, maintaining a close relationship with your cloud provider is key for ongoing support, collaboration and communication.

Examples of Platform as a Service

Developing and testing apps in a hosted environment may be the most common use for PaaS, but it’s certainly not the only one. PaaS tools also allow businesses to analyze their data, access business process management (BPM) platforms, add communication features to applications and maintain databases.

As with other cloud computing offerings, using PaaS means that developers can get straight to the business of creating without worrying about the administration, maintenance and security issues.

Companies are using PaaS as they develop their own SaaS, as they migrate to the cloud and while creating cross-platform applications that can be used on any device. There are PaaS offerings for a variety of different programming languages. Popular PaaS providers include AWS Elastic Beanstalk, Microsoft Azure App Services, Google App Engine, IBM Cloud and Red Hat OpenShift.

  • AWS Elastic Beanstalk is a service for deploying and scaling web application and services developed with Java, NET, PHP, Node.js, Python, Ruby, Go and Docker on familiar services such as Apache, Nginx, Passenger and IIS.
  • Microsoft Azure App Services is designed by Microsoft for building, testing, deploying and managing applications and services through Microsoft-managed data centers.
  • Google App Engine provides web app developers and enterprises with access to Google’s scalable hosting and tier 1 internet service. The App Engine requires that apps be written in Java or Python, store data in Google BigTable and use the Google query language.
  • IBM Cloud blends its IaaS and PaaS services together more than other cloud providers, but services such as IBM Cloud Continuous Delivery and Tekton give developments the platform capabilities they need to quickly build and deploy applications.
  • Red Hat OpenShift is an open-source container-based platform focused on the private PaaS market. OpenShift provides developers with an integrated development environment for building and deploying Docker-formatted containers, with the target deployment platform being Kubernetes.

What’s the Difference Between PaaS vs. IaaS vs. SaaS

Platform as a service (PaaS) is essentially a layer between infrastructure as a service (IaaS) and software as a service (SaaS). While IaaS provides just the pay-as-you-go infrastructure for a company, PaaS steps it up by also providing a variety of tools needed to create applications. Meanwhile, SaaS is ready-to-use software that’s available via a third party over the internet. Most modern SaaS platforms are built on IaaS or PaaS platforms.

What Is PaaS - Advantages and Disadvantages | Cloud Computing | CompTIA (5)

The Future of PaaS

Technology is always evolving, and PaaS is no exception. Leading cloud service providers are starting to offer AI-platform-as-a-service (AIPaaS), which is a platform for delivering artificial intelligence (AI) applications. These could include pretrained machine learning models companies can use as-is or personalize with APIs for integrating specific AI capabilities into an application.

The fact is, cloud computing is simply becoming computing, and cloud-native design in new architecture is increasingly becoming the norm.

The future is exciting, and small businesses and new business across industries are able to plan for growth with PaaS. Without the burden of monitoring, maintaining and updating a development platform, you have the time and energy to focus on your core business.

Whether you’re looking to work in cloud computing or simply want to increase your knowledge on the subject, be sure to check out our other cloud computing resources.

What Is PaaS - Advantages and Disadvantages | Cloud Computing | CompTIA (2024)


What are the advantages and disadvantages of using PaaS? ›

Let's have a look at some prime pros of PaaS which will take your business to new heights.
  • Pros of PaaS. Decreased overheads. Faster Coding. Less Staff required. Pay as per need. More features like database, master data management and many more.
  • Cons of PaaS. Data Security. Integration. Changes from vendor.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of IaaS? ›

Less vendor management can be positive or negative depending on your needs. Although IaaS gives you more control, you'll also have more responsibility for managing your software and applications. This can be time-consuming, especially if you need to train your staff to deal with the new systems.

What are two advantages and two disadvantages of SaaS? ›

SaaS offers many potential advantages over the traditional models of business software installation, including:
  • Lower up-front cost. ...
  • Quick set up and deployment. ...
  • Easy upgrades. ...
  • Accessibility. ...
  • Scalability. ...
  • Lack of control. ...
  • Security and data concerns. ...
  • Limited range of applications.

What is the main advantage of using platform as a service? ›

Reduced Cost

Platform-as-a-Service is a great option for organizations looking to reduce their current operating costs. PaaS eliminates the need to build applications from scratch, thus reduces the costs associated with normal development.

What are disadvantages of PaaS? ›

Challenges may include the following:
  • Vendor Dependency: Very dependent upon the vendor's capabilities.
  • Risk of Lock-In: Customers may get locked into a language, interface or program they no longer need.
  • Compatibility: Difficulties may arise if PaaS is used in conjunction with existing development platforms.

What is one advantage of using PaaS? ›

The cost savings most commonly come from standardized and consolidated resources such as servers, as well as elimination of redundant work across teams. Another key benefit of PaaS is agility. PaaS customers are able to more rapidly deploy environments for development, testing, and production.

What are the advantages of PaaS over IaaS? ›

PaaS Advantages
  • PaaS-built software is highly scalable, available and multi-tenant, as it is cloud-based.
  • The development process is quickened and simplified.
  • Reduced expenses for creating, testing and launching apps.
  • Automated company policy.
  • Reduced amount of coding required.
  • Allows for easy migrating to the hybrid cloud.
Feb 2, 2024

What are the pros and cons of IaaS PaaS SaaS? ›

SaaS vs PaaS vs IaaS: How to Choose?
If you're interested in providing:Then go with:
Ready-to-use software that addresses specific needsSaaS
Freedom and a place to focus on developing appsPaaS
Access to and control over every aspect of infrastructureIaaS

Why PaaS is better than IaaS? ›

PaaS makes it quick and easy to set up development environments and deploy apps through the cloud. While you can also use IaaS for this purpose, PaaS comes pre-configured for your language, frameworks, and libraries.

What advantage does PaaS offer over SaaS? ›

PaaS is most often built on top of an IaaS platform to reduce the need for system administration. It allows you to focus on app development instead of infrastructure management. SaaS offers ready-to-use, out-of-the-box solutions that meet a particular business need (such as a website or email).

What are the disadvantages of SaaS? ›

Limited Customization: Most SaaS applications offer little in the way of customization from the vendor. Slower Speed: SaaS solutions can have more latency than client/server apps. Security Risks: While the SaaS provider secures the application itself, strict measures should be taken with sensitive data.

What are main advantages and disadvantages? ›

The advantage of advertising is that it can help businesses reach a wider audience, build brand awareness, and increase sales. However, the disadvantage is that it can be expensive and if not done effectively, can be a waste of resources.

What is PaaS in cloud computing? ›

Platform as a service (PaaS) is a complete development and deployment environment in the cloud, with resources that enable you to deliver everything from simple cloud-based apps to sophisticated, cloud-enabled enterprise applications.

What is PaaS and examples? ›

Platform as a service (PaaS) is a cloud computing platform where a third party offers the necessary software and hardware resources. These offerings enable clients to develop, run, and manage business applications without maintaining the infrastructure required for such software development processes.

How does PaaS work? ›

Platform as a service (PaaS) is a cloud computing model where a third-party provider delivers hardware and software tools to users over the internet. Usually, these tools are needed for application development. A PaaS provider hosts the hardware and software on its own infrastructure.

What are some of the disadvantages of the PaaS model quizlet? ›

Disadvantages of Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) are: Vendor lock-in, Data privacy, and Integration with the rest of the system applications.

What are some advantages and disadvantages of cloud computing as a service? ›

Below we list pros and cons of this not-so-new technology.
  • Advantage #1: Disaster Recovery (DR) ...
  • Advantage #2: Access your data anywhere. ...
  • Advantage #3: Low cost. ...
  • Advantage #4: Scalability. ...
  • Advantage #5: Security. ...
  • Disadvantage #1: Lack of total control. ...
  • Disadvantage #2: Difficult to migrate. ...
  • Disadvantage #3: Requires Internet.

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