Why APAC can expect a move to Platform-as-a-Service
Article by Pallavi Prakash, Product Marketing Manager, APAC, OVHcloud
Investment in the cloud is growing exponentially, particularly in the Asia-Pacific region. Overall cloud spending has witnessed consistent year-on-year (YoY) growth and is anticipated to reach US$200 billion by 2024. This can be attributed to post-pandemic conditions that have necessitated businesses to embrace digital technologies for improved operational efficiencies and to maintain market competitiveness. Furthermore, trends such as hybrid working, 5G-enabled innovative Internet of Things (IoT), and Artificial Intelligence/Machine Learning-based (AI/ML) use cases, as well as the rise of the metaverse and Web 3.0 applications, are also driving the phenomenal growth of the cloud market.
Today, cloud services are at the crux of any forward-looking business strategy. The cloud provides undeniable advantages – from not only storing data but deriving valuable data-informed insights, in real-time, catering them to organizations with the flexibility to scale business operations and providing remote access to employees. As such, many start-ups as well as small and large businesses have already embarked on their cloud adoption journeys. What is the cloud’s projected evolution, you ask? The whole market is moving to Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) solutions.
While Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) and Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) have long dominated the cloud market in spending, PaaS solutions are on the rise – having demonstrated an explosive 39.1% YoY growth since 2020. Now, businesses are embracing PaaS solutions as they advance towards in-house application development for better control over the ‘time-to-market’ applications in the competitive landscape.
Platform-as-a-Service is one of the three types of cloud computing services along with Infrastructure-as-a-Service and Software-as-a-Service. It refers to a platform that a cloud provider offers users via the network, hence, Platform-as-a-Service. This platform is hosted by the provider, within their infrastructure. The user logs in to the platform via the cloud provider control panel or an API.
PaaS solutions provide a ready-to-use platform on which you can install, configure, and run your own applications. The provider manages the hardware, virtualization layer, and operating system. This enables companies and developers to realize the cloud’s broader benefits like scalability, including rapid allocation and deallocation of resources with a pay-as-you-use model, enhanced security, and reliability, and enables the sharing of resources across multiple development teams, avoiding the need for excessive allocation of multiple assets of the same type in separate silos.
There are many reasons why PaaS models can be advantageous for companies as they can provide their teams, especially developers and programmers, with a platform to help them with their daily work, without managing the platform as the physical infrastructure is maintained by the cloud service provider. This means that businesses do not need to invest in local servers or train maintenance teams to use their tools.
Addressing transformation challenges
The COVID-19 pandemic had a significant impact on businesses, suppressing profitability, and diminishing cash flow and financial reserves. Platform-as-a-Service solutions have proven useful, being designed to help DevOps teams learn to foster collaboration in a remote environment and thereby expediting processes while reducing the manpower load. Additionally, the demand for PaaS-based solutions is increasing, with many businesses having adopted the work-from-home model to maintain employee well-being and operational efficiency.
The PaaS provider houses everything — servers, networks, storage, operating system software, databases — in their data center; the customer uses it for a usage-based monthly fee and can add more on-demand resources as necessary. Digital transformation poses challenges to a majority of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) here – with small businesses, in particular, struggling to catch up with their larger counterparts, and only 43% of all SMEs have experienced considerable success. Against this backdrop, PaaS solutions can allow companies to focus on what they specialize in without worrying about maintaining basic infrastructure. This not only frees up considerable resources but also allows businesses to shift gears to drive innovation instead.
With many businesses investing in big data, IoT, artificial intelligence, and 5G technologies to gain a competitive edge, and generate significant business insights for decision-making, PaaS solutions address challenges associated with the shift. The growing demand for analytics and big data technologies in cloud computing services is creating numerous new opportunities for businesses. Ultimately, in a digital economy, applications are the product that businesses market and what customers interface with.
To stay competitive, businesses must create, maintain, enhance, and scale applications within business constraints, and they must be well-equipped. Inadequate development environments have been found to be one of the reasons why most businesses never make it past the developmental stage. This is a risk and an investment that businesses today simply cannot afford. Hence, the importance of purpose-built Infrastructure. PaaS typically includes AI capabilities, enabling businesses to take advantage of these opportunities.
The case for migration to PaaS
If businesses already have a platform, cloud migration is a natural progression. However, owning and maintaining the infrastructure to run platforms on it will cost considerable time and money. By migrating to PaaS, infrastructure maintenance will be a problem of the past — businesses can instead focus on their applications and business data which in turn will boost business responsiveness to customer requests and provide enterprises the competitive edge needed today. Furthermore, engaging a cloud provider that provides PaaS solutions as part of an integrated ecosystem can ensure optimal security, in natural alignment with compliance protocols for the data stored while also ensuring protective add-ons like anti-DDoS solutions.
Now more than ever, businesses need to access and unlock the full potential of the cloud. Its ability to provide IT resources on-demand, scalable infrastructure, and a pay-per-use offering approach makes PaaS solutions a no-brainer, particularly for start-ups, small businesses, and scale-ups.
The views in this article is that of the author and may not represent the views of Tech Wire Asia.
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