What is iPaaS?

As the name suggests iPaaS is a development platform for building integration applications.  It provides a set of services and capabilities for integrating applications in the cloud and within the enterprise . The core tenants of iPaaS are the same as PaaS except the services on the platform are geared towards integration. In addition to some base expectations such as multi-tenancy, elasticity and reliability, there is a list of core capabilities that you can expect from iPaaS:

1. Intermediation

Being able to integrate applications and services is paramount for iPaaS. The cloud presents new intermediation scenarios which include SaaS and cloud services, custom cloud apps (iPaaS or aPaaS), on premise applications, and on premise services/resources.

2. Orchestration

I see the main use case for iPaaS is service composition with the services are SaaS and cloud applications, this requires connectivity and the ability to map data between services.  However, simple micro-flows, straight-through event processing and workflow will also be needed for integration applications to reach a broader range of use-cases.

3. Service Container

As well as integrating applications and services iPaaS consumers will need to publish their own services using either RESTful web services or SOAP and Web Service technologies. With many applications publishing a REST API, the ability to publish services will help support different consumers including Browser (JavaScript), mobile/device and machine to machine (M2M).

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