Difference Between SAAS, PAAS and IAAS in cloud computing

Software as a Service (SaaS) is the most common and widely used cloud service model. They are either free or have a pay-as-you-go model. In fact, most people already use such platforms. Gmail, Google Docs, and Office 365 are all examples of this type of software. Their other distinguishing characteristic is in the level of control. The vendor is the owner of these services while the user has limited access to their functionality.

The delivery is extremely easy for the user. It works on any platform without any downloads or installations. Services are available directly in a web browser. Among the typical characteristics of this model are their centralized nature, remote server hosting, and lack of manual updates.


  • Reduced expenses on installation and integration.
  • Quick and easy access.
  • Streamlined upgrades.

Examples of such services: Google G Suite, Trello, Salesforce, Dropbox, GitLab, and GitHub. You can also see our own SaaS projects here.


  • No integration support since the service isn’t a part of the internal infrastructure of the organization.
  • It may be difficult to stop using the service. Some providers offer payment models that lock you into using their product sometimes without the ability to export the necessary data.
  • Potential for data leaks and security breaches.
  • There is a lack of customization options.
  • The provider has control over the product and its features.
  • Limited or locked features.
  • Downtime and performance issues. These usually happen at the least opportune times. With SaaS, you can’t do anything about it since it’s fully up to the vendor to provide support and fix any pressing issues.

When to use SaaS:

  • Personal use. You are most likely already using them every day.
  • Small companies or startups in need of a quick launch.
  • Small or easy projects that require collaboration.
  • Apps that aren’t used regularly.

What Is a PaaS Model

This model allows its users to run, develop or manage applications. It is easier and often cheaper than building it from scratch but still has all the tools for the full cycle of development.

Read more about PAAS  in this article

What Is an IaaS Model

The IaaS model provides you with virtualized computing resources than can completely replace on-premises infrastructure. This includes storage, servers and networking resources.

Read more about IAAS  in this article

Author: Aditya Bhuyan

I am an IT Professional with close to two decades of experience. I mostly work in open source application development and cloud technologies. I have expertise in Java, Spring and Cloud Foundry.

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