Platform as a service (PaaS) is one of the most popular types of cloud computing services. When an individual or a company purchases PaaS, they are essentially purchasing a custom-built cloud environment that is developed to support application development, scaling, and operations. Developers can essentially construct applications and test them intensively before deployment. Any PaaS solution needs to be integrated seamlessly with the underlying IaaS environment so that web developers have regular access to the type of hardware resources they need.
The developer normally has complete control over how applications are deployed and can even configure the settings of the cloud environment. It is generally seperated from the basic computing infrastructure, the operation and management of which is normally left to the service provider. PaaS is an excellent way of developing comprehensive applications on the cheap without needing to invest in a substantial amount of underlying infrastructure.
How much responsibility do you have in a PaaS environment?
In a PaaS environment, the developers essentially can focus their entire energy and resources on the rapid development, deployment, and scalability of applications. PaaS works on top of IaaS and it removes the mundane operations of manually running and managing clungy physical servers. In essence, developers can focus on all the back-end stuff that goes on behind the function of a website or an application without worrying about infrastructure.
PaaS can be public, private and hybrid
It basically boils down to what you want. Amazon, Micrsoft, and the rest have dozens of PaaS services, many of which are perfect for either the public cloud, the private cloud, or a combination of the two. Based on how you seek to manage and spread your data and resources, you can ideally select both private and public PaaS services. You can get a company to developer a perfectly secure and private PaaS environment for your needs, but this can often be incredibly expensive.
Advantages of PaaS
PaaS is ideal for startups that seek to develop sophisticated applications for mobile and desktop alike due to the low overhead costs involved. For example, if you seek to develop an application as intensive as Snapchat, buying PaaS instead of physical servers will save you thousands of dollars in the short-run. You only need to pay for what you use and you can have complete control over the maintenance and upgrades of your system. Also, you are responsible for upgrading the software you develop.