Vendors are engaging in a range of marketing tricks and gimmicks, especially cloudwashing, and simply confusing potential customers thinking about integration PaaS (iPaaS) investments, according to market watcher Ovum.
Saurabh Sharma, senior analyst in the IT solutions team at Ovum and author of a new report looking at the problem, said the rise of SaaS has necessitated a shift away from traditional integration approaches – but vendors and pundits alike are muddying the waters with a range of claims and sales approaches.
"IPaaS is emerging as an alternative to traditional integration approaches, and several iPaaS solutions can now cater for the needs of SaaS, on-premise, and B2B integration, at least for integration projects with medium levels of complexity," Sharma said.
"However, organisations must understand that neither iPaaS nor traditional integration approaches is a silver bullet for integration."
Meanwhile, "several vendors" were positioning their traditional integration offerings, which happen to be deployed using cloud, as true single-instance, multi-tenant, iPaaS solutions when they are simply not, he said.
It is true that faster deployment and quicker RoI has become critical but there is a complex interplay of business needs and budget constraints that must be considered, for one thing, said Sharma.
Confusion in the market must be dispelled if customers are to know what to spend their limited resources on, especially if they are to reap the rewards, according to Ovum.
Some industry pundits have put forward ideas about iPaaS that are simply impractical, Sharma said.
"One hypothesis is that iPaaS is not only about integration and that the term should be used for cloud-based platforms that enable development of complete business applications. Another is the ambitious idea that hybrid iPaaS can ease complexity of hybrid integration."
These notions are far removed from the practicality and intricacies of actual implementations, scolded Sharma.
Ovum's new report Integration PaaS: A Unified and Pragmatic Approach to Cloud, On-premise, and B2B Integration recommends a hybrid cloud strategy in many cases, and looks at how to evaluate iPaaS offerings in the market against various criteria.
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