The last two decades have witnessed innumerable technological revolutions. Alongside, one of the most popular technologies ruling over the business is “Cloud Computing”.

Using networks over the remote servers has become a game-changer for the business. The fact is, by the end of 2020 approximately 67% of the enterprise will be on the cloud. Even more, more than 82% of the workforce will work on the cloud. Sounds interesting, right?

So, whether you’re already running a business or planning to start a new venture, cloud integration will be a mandatory thing. But, when you deep dive into the ocean of cloud computing, you may get confused between the top three service models – Iaas vs PaaS vs SaaS.

Therefore, in this article, we will be going through many aspects of SaaS vs PaaS vs IaaS. Stay tuned till the end of the blog to know which one will suit best for your business.

Let’s Proceed!

Cloud Service Models in 2020-21

The digital world is driven by tons of data, and there is a huge need for storage, processing, access, and security. Cloud service models came up with X-as-a-service models which solved this problem of organizations. The three main types of cloud computing models introduced by them are,

  • IaaS.
  • PaaS.
  • SaaS.

SaaS vs PaaS vs IaaS – Three Cloud Computing Models Explained

What is SaaS?

SaaS, also known as Software as a Service, or Cloud Application Service. It is the most popular and common type of cloud computing service. The businesses deliver their application over the internet, and it will be managed by the third-party vendors.

Majority of the SaaS-based applications run on the web browser and do not require any downloads or installations.

The corporate mobile market within SaaS is expected to be worth $7.4 billion by 2021.

To put it short, SaaS is a cloud-based software application wherein users can buy the subscription and use the application via the internet.

What is PaaS?

PaaS referred to as Platform as a Service. Consequently, it is never easy to define Paas in a sentence or two. Thus, consider it as a tool for the developer to create products or applications online. The PaaS platform can work as database management, analytics, and middleware.

In technical words, we can define it as a cloud-based platform service for the developers to build their application. PaaS also provides various frameworks to ease the work of developers of making custom applications.

By 2022 the public cloud PaaS market is forecast to reach almost 60 billion U.S. dollars in revenue.

The servers, storage, and networking all are managed by third-party vendors or enterprises. The developers just manage and maintain the product or application through PaaS.

What is IaaS?

IaaS is a highly scalable and automated computer platform built with the latest technologies. It is even known as Infrastructure as a Service or Cloud Infrastructure Services. The concept over here is quite simple, “pay-as-you-go” for networking, virtualization, and storage.

Public cloud IaaS revenues are expected to rise significantly over the coming years, from around 44.5 billion U.S. dollars in 2019 to more than 76.5 billion U.S. dollars by 2022.

Altogether, IaaS users are enabled to manage their data infrastructure without any physical site. All you need to do here is a store and manage the data on servers via the internet through dashboard and APIs.

It has become much popular among growing businesses due to its ability to scale IT solutions and virtual hardware.

SEE ALSO: Custom API Development & Integration Services

Market Share Breakdown – SaaS, PaaS, IaaS

By hook and crook, cloud computing service models have grown vast and popular. Looking at the reports and analysis, SaaS has the biggest market share among all three. Though, IaaS is projected to be the fastest-growing market with a CAGR of 20% in the upcoming years.

The below-given table shows worldwide revenue generated by various cloud service models.

Cloud Computing Revenue Segments

Besides that, looking at the current market trends, things are changing. Many experts have predicted that PaaS, with many other X-as-a-service, will be the most popular one in the near future. Have a look at one more researched graph which shows the annual rates of cloud service models.

Best Cloud Services Revenue Share

SaaS vs PaaS vs IaaS – Key Differences

To precisely know the difference between IaaS, PaaS and SaaS consider the following situation. For instance, consider the terms under the umbrella of cloud computing like creating, sorting, and building the data over the cloud. And, now consider them in the sequence we have arranged in the below-given image.

 SaaS vs PaaS vs IaaS - Top Key Differences

As each cloud computing service model is different from each other, we need to understand each one of them to determine the right one for your business. We will start with SaaS vs PaaS.

SaaS vs PaaS

When we talk about SaaS, everything from software to data, it is thoroughly managed by the third company. While for PaaS, things are quite different. You can build a completely new product on the top of the PaaS platform.

For instance, if I want to build an application, I would use the PaaS platform. But, once the app is developed, my application will be known as a SaaS-based app. Why? This would be your question. Let me provide you with an answer to it. This happened, because now my app is built, and it is providing services to its users.

To conclude, PaaS is suitable for the ones who want to build a new solution for the existing network. And, SaaS is for the business who want a third-party solution to ease their work.

Paas Vs IaaS

The biggest difference between PaaS vs IaaS is that PaaS is more focused on user scalability and flexibility. On the other hand, IaaS is more about administrator control over the operating system.

Adding more to it, think you want to start a website. Here, you can use a PaaS product like Google App Engine for the design and installation of your website, and an IaaS product like Amazon Web Services to host the site.

Important Note: “There is no specific comparison between SaaS Vs IaaS, as they are a two completely different thing”

In essence, consider IaaS as a root of developing a cloud-based service. PaaS as a platform wherein the developers can build up the app or website. And, SaaS as the software you can buy to manage your company on cloud.

We hope now you are clear with the difference between IaaS vs PaaS vs SaaS.

PaaS vs IaaS vs SaaS – Benefits & Characteristics

By and large, each cloud service model comes with some or other advantage of every business. Though, it is good or bad for you will completely depend on your business perspective. Let’s get into it!

Platform as a Service

The key advantage that PaaS offers is complete control over the platform software. All you need here is an IT administrator for your company who can manage your product or platform.

Another benefit of PaaS is for the developers, they don’t need to develop an app from scratch. It will ultimately save time as well as money for the company. All in all, Platform-as-a-service is a perfect solution for the one who wants to build a unique application with fewer fortunes.


  • Developed with virtualization technology
  • Accessible by multiple users
  • Scalable & Flexible – choose resources based on your business needs
  • Easy to run and manage
  • Seamless integration for the database and web services

Infrastructure as a Service

In comparison to PaaS vs SaaS, IaaS cloud provides the biggest advantage for software control. The companies and IT experts can build up their own technology stack and integrate it with the infrastructure.

It offers you with additional resources to make your app more user friendly. Take a note, IaaS will require more investments in comparison to SaaS and PaaS, but no expense for the hardware.


  • Cost-effective
  • Huge software control
  • Build your technology stack
  • Flexible and dynamic for all resources
  • Retain complete control on infrastructure

Software as a Service

The best part of SaaS is you don’t have to install anything, just sign in through the browser or mobile apps. To put it short, without any local hosting on servers, you can start accessing the software from any smart device.

The fact is SaaS app development is suitable for almost every type of business. All the members of your business will have personalized login and access to the information as per their positions.


  • Offers security, maintenance and compliance in the part of the cost
  • Scalable for every type of business
  • The third-party provider will host it on a remote server
  • User don’t need to worry about software or hardware update

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SaaS vs PaaS vs IaaS – Limitations & Concerns

Every coin has two sides. Same is with this cloud service model. With so many advantages, there are some limitations and concerns too.

SaaS Disadvantages

The major concern for the SaaS cloud is interoperability with the existing app if it is not designed as the SaaS integration standards. Some organizations may need a deep integration of data and services. But, the SaaS platform offers limited resources for the complex integrations. With that, SaaS even has minimal options for the customizations.

Furthermore, a large amount of data may sometimes lead to data security issues. As we already said that SaaS comes with a standardized form, it has resulted in the limitation of the features.

PaaS Disadvantages

The business can run their applications of the PaaS platform, but the sensitive data residing in the third-party vendor lock may face the security issues and concerns. Moreover, if you’re integrating your existing app with PaaS cloud, then some customization and configuration are necessary to be done.

The fact is, PaaS may not be able to optimize every language and framework. Therefore, some specific frameworks will not be suitable to run on the Paas Cloud.

IaaS Disadvantages

IaaS provides the overall control of the infrastructure to the organizations. Thus, you require an IT expert who has the capacity to manage the whole infrastructure. You may need to train the workforce to effectively manage the IaaS cloud.

The major concern with IaaS is to make sure that one customer is not able to access the data of another customer. It may lead to a security concern for the whole business. Above all, you need to make minor changes in the apps before migrating it to the cloud.

IaaS vs PaaS vs SaaS – Examples

Top IaaS vs PaaS vs SaaS Examples

Examples will help you get the better distinctions among the cloud service models, and help you in choosing the one for your business. Have a look at the examples to clear up any confusion among the two cloud models.

IaaS Examples

Google Computer Engine: It offers virtual machine features that are hosted at Google’s data centres.

AWS: Amazon Web Services is the most used cloud infrastructure option these days. In fact, you will find plenty of resources comparing AWS IaaS vs PaaS vs SaaS. It provides cloud space and computing software to the vendors for AWS application development.

Microsoft Azure: You must have gone through a Microsoft IaaS vs PaaS vs SaaS term. You can get all these solutions from Microsoft’s Azure as you get from AWS. more than that, with Azure, you can get even hybrid cloud solutions.

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PaaS Examples

Openshift: Redhat’s Openshift provides every tool that a developer needs to build user-friendly and efficient apps. You can also install it on your servers.

Google App Engine: It provides all common tools that developers will be in need to develop an application. You are allowed to bring your own runtime language and frameworks to Google App Engines.

Windows Azure: It allows developers to use the cloud-based virtual desktop, and build the application from anywhere through visual online studios.

SaaS Examples

Hubspot: This platform is one of the leaders in inbound marketing and sales. They provide innumerable tools to enhance your marketing strategies.

ProfitWell: It is a leading provider of pricing, subscription analytics and retention software for the SaaS platform.

GSuite: Google’s platform that comes with its own mail and office suite. Even more, it offers tools for scheduling and online collaboration.

Besides the one mentioned above, there are so many other cloud model examples like DigitalOcean,, Dropbox, etc.

Which Cloud Model Services are best for your Business?

So, now you know every point of these three cloud services. But, have you decided which one will suit best for your business? If not, then below given points will let you have a clear vision on the same.

With resources limits for Small to Large Businesses – SaaS

Software as a Service will help your business to save money as it has nothing to do with the designing and developing the software. Therefore, it is advisable that if you have a product that matches with the SaaS space, then just go with it. The all-in-one nature of the SaaS software will allow your product to be more efficient and flexible.

With a few resources for Medium & Large Businesses – PaaS

Are you looking for something which can easily integrate with your workflow or existing technology? Then PaaS is worth considering for your business. We can say that PaaS is somewhere in between SaaS and IaaS to provide a good customized solution for cloud application development. We would not recommend it for the small business as it will just cost you more than needed.

With moderate resources for Medium & Large Businesses – IaaS

The businesses with serious IT capacity can make effective and maximum use of IaaS. It will let you create a new technology stack that is specially built for your business needs. We recommend you to go for the IaaS especially if you’re running a large enterprise wherein each process of our business will be controlled by you.

SaaS vs PaaS vs IaaS – Conclusion

So, that’s all about the three cloud service models sailing in the market. And, we can even call it a future of digital businesses. Cloud computing services will ease your digital business, and help you to enhance the user experience and get better ROI.

In the comparison of SaaS vs PaaS vs IaaS, now you might have got a clear idea on the one which will suit best for your business. Though, if you’re still confused on any point, get in touch with our team. They will help you to get the best cloud service model for your business.

Mayur Panchal

Article By

Mayur Panchal

Mayur Panchal is the CTO of Excellent Webworld. With his skills and expertise, He stays updated with industry trends and utilizes his technical expertise to address problems faced by entrepreneurs and startup owners.