Integration Platform-as-a-Service: Concepts, Advantages & Disadvantages

Blog /cloud-series-part-8

In my previous posts I discussed the concepts, advantages and disadvantages of Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS), Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), and Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS).  This time I'm tackling the newest cloud service model called Integration Platform-as-a-Service or iPaaS.

The integration of on-premise data contained within in-house legacy systems and PaaS-based applications is often challenging.  Some enterprises are now solving the integration problem between applications in the cloud and on-premise data and between different cloud applications by using a cloud integration platform.

iPaaS is an emerging, next-generation integration platform that includes tools and technologies to manage integration data flows. The platform delivers a virtual computer or middleware in the cloud and uses a set of “service connectors” to link application components much like a directory function. The services also include management and orchestration functions and a full set of middleware features. iPaaS holds the promise of seamless integration across multiple clouds and between clouds and legacy applications.

Gartner defines iPaaS as "a suite of cloud services enabling development, execution and governance of integration flows connecting any combination of on premises and cloud-based processes, services, applications and data within individual or across multiple organizations."


iPaaS holds the promise of seamless integration across multiple clouds and between clouds and legacy applications.


iPaaS offers robust features to integrate popular SaaS applications, such as Salesforce.com and ServiceNow, with social media and enterprise applications. Its strength is in lightweight integrations that are quick to develop and deploy.

iPaaS may not be suitable for acting as an enterprise-level integration platform yet because it lacks guaranteed delivery, publish-subscribe, and other features supported by enterprise platforms.

Stay tuned for my next post where I'll explore the impediments to cloud adoption.

- Ryan Reed, Cloud Evangelist

Post Date: 12/4/2014

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