The cloud has become a must-have business tool for any organization that wants to remodel its entire digital infrastructure and bring it into the 21st Century. The vast array of services made available through cloud computing not only makes businesses more flexible, but it also fuels their growth.
As a result, the cloud provides its users with the unprecedented ability to develop new services, collaborate, and store huge amounts of data without the burden of running their own servers.
Cloud platforms make these benefits and more possible by allowing organizations to provision solutions “as a service.” From software to disaster recovery, cloud users can access nearly any service through this leading-edge delivery model.
Read on to explore a few of the ways that your organization can use the cloud as a service:
1. Anything as a service (XaaS)
XaaS refers to any and all services that users can provision through the cloud, from technologies to individual products. Anything that cloud providers deliver via a network such as the internet instead of on-site falls under this category. Software as a service (SaaS) and platform as a service (PaaS) are just two examples of XaaS offerings.
Providers make XaaS services available through a subscription model instead of charging their clients a single upfront fee. This gives cloud users access to the latest tools and technologies, allowing them to react more efficiently to emerging market demands. As such, XaaS is quickly becoming the go-to service model for CIOs looking to facilitate total digital transformations at their organizations.
2. Backend as a service (BaaS)
Though it is a relatively young cloud model, BaaS is quickly becoming the most sought-after model for organizations seeking backend cloud storage. Through this model, cloud providers deliver the tools that app developers need to generate a backend that can support their platforms.
Not only does this provide more storage space, but it also improves processing speed and expedites the development process. BaaS thus allows developers to spend more time on their apps and less on worries about scaling.
3. Desktop as a service (DaaS)
Sometimes also referred to as workspace as a service, DaaS gives cloud users access to desktop operating systems that operate externally within a vendor’s servers. By streaming these virtual environments through the cloud, providers enable end users to connect to their desktops and all of their software from both desktop and mobile devices.
4. Disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS)
One of the fastest-growing as-a-service models on the market, DRaaS consolidates all disaster recovery services into a centralized platform. By offering both backup and recovery solutions, providers help their users ensure business continuity even under the direst of circumstances.
In the event of data loss or system failure, DRaaS enables organizations to recover individual files, data centers, and everything in between. As such, they can mitigate the effects of system downtime and get back to the work that matters most.
5. Infrastructure as a service (IaaS)
IaaS allows organizations to outsource their infrastructure needs while still gaining access to all the computing features that they need. Through this model, cloud vendors provide readily-available hardware on demand to their clients.
This gives them access to enterprise-level storage capacity, compute power, servers, and more. As the same time, IaaS eliminates the need for organizations to devote resources to maintaining their own infrastructure.
Like other as-a-service cloud offerings, IaaS makes infrastructure more affordable because users can pay for hardware as needed. Should they need to increase their resources or scale them down, they have the freedom to modify their IaaS setup at any time.
6. Platform as a service (PaaS)
An ideal model for app developers, PaaS gives organizations both the infrastructure and the platforms that they need to build cloud solutions for the apps they are creating. A step up from IaaS, it creates an arena in which these users can develop their apps, test their capabilities, and, ultimately, deploy them.
Since IaaS is available via the cloud, developers can do all of this without needing to purchase and maintain their own platforms in house. The responsibility of hosting this infrastructure falls on the shoulders of their provider.
PaaS does far more than just consolidate all app development resources into one location. Its robust security and backup features ensure that developers won’t have to worry about losing their work. Moreover, PaaS environments facilitate collaboration among teams. This allows them to work together on apps even when working in different locations.
7. Software as a service (SaaS)
Perhaps the most common as-a-service cloud model of all, SaaS gives users access to fully-optimized software and applications. Since they are accessible via the cloud, these platforms do not reside within on-premises devices and local servers.
SaaS vendors host this software in their own cloud networks and charge their clients for access to them. Where some providers offer subscriptions, others allow their users to access software on a pay-per-use basis.
Herein lies the greatest advantage of SaaS: its cost effectiveness. Instead of purchasing each piece of software needed to do business, organizations can simply provision applications through the cloud. Their providers will handle all aspects of licensing and maintenance. This makes SaaS even more affordable to companies with tight IT budgets.