In its essence, a Container as a Service is container-based virtualization providing container engines and the underlying computing resources as a service from a cloud provider. It is like owning the platform resources from the PaaS model. PaaS users are no longer limited to platform-specific integrations of API’s and can have the same experience using their own hardware or cloud account.
Benefits of Using CaaS
With the open architecture of CaaS, you can move around from cloud to cloud or even back to your physical server systems. In other words, CaaS allows you to create a multi-cloud or hybrid cloud solution for your organization. The main benefit of CaaS is to offer an agile, simple path to utilize all the benefits that PaaS provides without the platform middlemen.
Quick, Light Deployment — a CaaS such as Kubernetes enables abstract use of the underlying infrastructure through clusters (or standardized interfaces). By utilizing smaller, lighter clusters; they take up much fewer resources and “rent” space compared to PaaS.
Standardized Functionality — through a single pane, you can run on AWS, Google, Azure and many providers of IaaS. You can achieve all of the power of standardization without reducing the quality of functionality (a growing complaint against the PaaS systems.)
Quick Iteration — you can easily lift applications in containers to public cloud and deployment of complex enterprise workloads quickly.
Why the Industry is Moving Towards CaaS
There is a lot of confusion between CaaS and PaaS as iterations of IaaS these days. The best way to distinguish the two is that on the Platform, there are no overhead operations. You can just focus on coding and the application deployment is handled by the platform. There are a lot of “opinionated” platforms though, and each platform has their own rules and preferences.
CaaS is better suited for launching complex, customized deployments by companies or developers that want the agility and ownership of their systems over the ease of the platform. This usually requires a higher need to know deployment operations along with the coding.
As more development teams gain the knowledge and the industry moves towards more and more agility, it appears most PaaS providers are already starting to morph into CaaS providers. While PaaS provides a great architecture around the development team, CaaS has made it even easier to create custom applications and development of applications AND the specifics of the deployment inside of a unique container.
Why You Should Care
Container as a Service allows for agile development, quick iterations, customized deployment, and to utilize all of the benefits of cloud servers without paying extra for the costs of an integrated platform. Teams are also better able to “own” the technology and move from server to server quickly. One of the immediate downsides is that development teams are responsible not just for development but also for deployment. This necessitates a bigger team or at least increased knowledge for CaaS to be used in an organization. However, CaaS providers today – including the major public cloud vendors – are abstracting a lot of the underlying complexity to make it easier for companies to deploy and manage CaaS-based environments.
Further, Next Pathway has developed Factory-based solutions that automate most of the development effort required to deploy or re-architect applications on CaaS environments – specifically the design, development and testing of microservices and APIs through our proprietary accelerator Mercury. You can read more about our solution here and how it can help accelerate your organization’s CaaS strategy.