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PaaS, IaaS, and SaaS: Making the Right Choice for Your Oracle Cloud Migration

Author: John Kaufling | | April 6, 2021

Cloud computing has gone from being a cutting-edge technology to a well-established best practice for businesses of all sizes and industries. According to Flexera’s 2020 State of the Cloud Report, 98 percent of organizations are now using at least one public or private cloud.


Beneath the umbrella of “the cloud,” however, there are several cloud services. The term XaaS (“anything as a service”) is shorthand for the proliferation of cloud services in recent years—everything from databases and artificial intelligence to unified communications and disaster recovery is now available from your choice of cloud provider.

In this article, we’ll discuss the three “pillars” of cloud computing—SaaS, IaaS, and PaaS—and discuss how you might use any or all of them when migrating to the Oracle cloud.

  1. Oracle SaaS (Software as a Service)

    SaaS (“software as a service”) refers to software applications that are hosted on a remote server and provisioned to customers over the Internet. Oracle’s SaaS cloud offerings include:

    • Oracle EPM Cloud
    • Oracle ERP—Financials Cloud
    • Oracle HCM Cloud
    • Oracle Analytics Cloud
    • Oracle SCM and Manufacturing Cloud
    • Oracle Data Cloud

    Using SaaS is best in the following situations:

    • Your software needs to prioritize scalability and accessibility from anywhere at any time.
    • Your processes are standardized across the enterprise or can be changed to fit the application.
    • An off-the-shelf product straight from the vendor can fit your business requirements.
    • You prefer a monthly or an annual payment scheme to large one-time capital expenses.

  3. Oracle IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service)

    IaaS (“infrastructure as a service”) refers to physical IT infrastructure (i.e. compute, network, storage, etc.) that is remotely provisioned and managed over the Internet. Oracle’s IaaS offering is Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI), which includes everything from bare-metal servers and virtual machines (VMs) to more advanced offerings like GPUs (graphics processing units) and high-performance computing.

    Using IaaS is best in the following situations:

    • You have the necessary expertise in-house to remotely manage your IT infrastructure.
    • You want to save money by only paying for the computing resources you actually use.
    • Your IT environment is flexible and workloads are variable.
    • You need to be able to quickly provision IT resources while shutting down excess capacity when demand is low.

  5. Oracle PaaS (Platform as a Service)

    Last but not least, PaaS (“platform as a service”) refers to a complete cloud platform for software development and deployment. PaaS includes the essential infrastructure and middleware as well as technologies such as artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things (IoT), containerization, and big data analytics.

    Oracle’s PaaS offering is also incorporated within OCI and makes use of both Oracle and open-source technologies. Oracle PaaS includes functionality for application development, content management, and business analytics, among others.

    Unlike SaaS and IaaS, using PaaS isn’t a choice that you can make in isolation. Each SaaS or IaaS platform usually works best with one or two PaaS options, which considerably narrows your choices.


SaaS, IaaS, and PaaS: although each one falls under the umbrella of “cloud computing,” each one has a very different role to play for your organization’s IT environment. If you need more advice on which one is right for you, reach out to a knowledgeable, qualified Oracle cloud partner like Datavail.

Discussing the various Oracle cloud options is especially timely right now—the end of support (EOS) date for Oracle Hyperion EPM on-premises is arriving in December 2021. EPM 11.1 users who don’t upgrade will fall out of compliance, exposing themselves to security vulnerabilities and missing out on new features and functionality.

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