Rishidot Research Briefing Notes - Apprenda


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This is a briefing note on Apprenda, a private PaaS player offering support for .NET and Java.

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Rishidot Research Briefing Notes - Apprenda

  1. 1. Briefing  Notes  -­‐  Apprenda    A  Briefing  Note  By  Krishnan  Subramanian   Briefing  Notes  -­‐  Apprenda   A  Briefing  Note  by  Krishnan  Subramanian     Company:     Apprenda  (www.apprenda.com)     Market:     Platform  as  a  Service  (PaaS)     Products:     Apprenda  PaaS     Summary:     Apprenda   is   one   of   the   early   private   PaaS   players   with   a   focus   on   best   of   breed   technology.   After   an   initial   focus   on   .NET,   Apprenda   is   diversifying  into  other  languages  with  the  Java  support  announcement   today.     Relying   on   the   enterprise   need   for   a   deeper   .NET   support   (and   now   Java),   they   have   gained   strong   traction   in   financial   and   biotech   sectors.   Today,   they   have   announced   that   J   P   Morgan   Chase   is   using   Apprenda  platform  for  their  mission  critical  needs.  
  2. 2. Briefing  Notes  -­‐  Apprenda    A  Briefing  Note  By  Krishnan  Subramanian   Market  Overview     Platform  as  a  Service  (PaaS)  market  segment  is  still  in  its  early  stages  even  as  some  large  enterprises  are   embracing   PaaS   for   their   mission   critical   needs.   In   this   briefing   note,   we   are   going   to   focus   on   the   application  developer  platforms  and,  henceforth,  any  use  of  the  term  PaaS  in  this  note  refers  to  these   platform   services.   Even   though   PaaS   came   into   prominence   long   back   with   services   like   Google   App   Engine,   Heroku   and   Engine   Yard,   its   traction   in   the   enterprise   market   is   still   very   limited.   In   the   early   days,  biggest  traction  for  PaaS  was  from  individual  developers  and  startups  wanting  to  push  their  apps   directly  to  a  hosted  platform  in  order  to  avoid  any  investments  for  operations.  In  the  recent  years,  we   are   seeing   increased   traction   for   both   hosted   PaaS   as   well   as   private   PaaS   from   mid   market   to   large   enterprises.   The  increased  enterprise  adoption  of  PaaS  in  the  last  two  years  is  partly  due  to  the  availability  of  private   PaaS   offerings   and   also   due   to   the   fact   that   enterprise   IT   today   understands   the   value   of   such   platforms   including   keeping   rogue   IT   under   control.   In   spite   of   the   increased   interest   in   enterprise   PaaS,   the   adoption   is   still   pretty   slow.   However,   it   is   expected   to   accelerate   in   the   coming   years   with   the   maturity   of  PaaS  offerings  and  other  trends  like  reduced  enterprise  concerns  about  lock-­‐in,  security,  etc..   The  PaaS  segment  can  be  roughly  categorized  as:   • Hosted  PaaS   • Hybrid/Private  PaaS  with  infrastructure  abstraction   • Hybrid/Private  PaaS  with  tight  control  over  the  infrastructure  (DevOps  model)   We   have   Heroku,   Google   App   Engine,   Engine   Yard,   etc.   on   the   hosted   PaaS   category,   CloudFoundry   Variants,  WSO2,  Apprenda,  OpenShift,  etc.  on  the  second  category  and  offerings  like  Cloudify,  Brooklyn   Project,   etc.   for   the   DevOps   category.   For   a   comprehensive   coverage   of   the   PaaS   market   segment,   please  refer  to  our  upcoming  research  report  on  2nd  April  2013  at  Deploycon.   Apprenda  Overview     Apprenda’s  enterprise  cloud  platform  falls  into  the  private  PaaS  category  and  can  be  deployed  on  top  of   public  cloud,  private  cloud  or  hybrid  cloud.    Ever  since  its  launch,  Apprenda  has  been  focused  on  .NET   and   today   it   is   making   a   pivot   by   announcing   additional   support   for   Java.   Unlike   other   PaaS   providers   who   take   a   Polyglot   approach   to   supporting   multiple   languages,   Apprenda   takes   the   best   of   breed   approach.   Unlike   in   Polyglot,   where   all   languages   are   supported   inside   a   single   platform,   Apprenda   supports   multiple   platforms   for   different   languages   but   offers   a   seamless   single   pane   of   glass   for   managing  multiple  platforms.   Apprenda  Platform  is  a  highly  available  and  extensible  platform  with  complete  support  for  Application   Lifecycle   Management.   In   the   recently   announced   Version   4.0   of   their   platform,   they   have   added   support   for   Hybrid   Cloud,   AD/LDAP   support,   multi-­‐tenant   queue   support   (something   like   a   message   bus),  support  for  Windows  services  (legacy  application  support),  etc..    Now,  with  the  availability  of  Java  
  3. 3. Briefing  Notes  -­‐  Apprenda    A  Briefing  Note  By  Krishnan  Subramanian   support  in  Apprenda  Platform,  enterprises  can  take  advantage  of  two  of  the  dominant  languages  inside   the  enterprises  even  today  (.NET  and  Java).   Even  within  the  .NET  PaaS  segment,  Apprenda’s  support  for  legacy  apps  gives  them  an  advantage  over   Windows  Azure  in  the  enterprise  market.  Moreover,  they  also  help  service  providers  leverage  Apprenda   platform   to   offer   PaaS   that   fits   very   well   with   the   federated   cloud   model   strongly   advocated   by   Rishidot   Research.   With   the   announcement   today   that   J   P   Morgan   Chase   is   using   Apprenda   platform   for   their   mission   critical   applications,   they   have   not   only   showcased   their   platform   as   one   of   the   strong   contenders  for  enterprise  PaaS  but   also  showed  the  world  that  even  large  enterprises  can  trust  PaaS  for   their  developer  needs.     Advantages     -­‐ Support  for  legacy  and  modern  applications.  It  may  not  fit  into  the  puritan  definition  of  PaaS   where  the  platform  is  meant  to  support  only  modern  applications  but  it  solves  an  important   enterprise   need   for   a   platform   that   could   support   the   legacy   apps   along   with   a   way   to   build   modern  distributed  apps.  Enterprises  are  heavily  invested  in  legacy  apps  and  any  platform   that  supports  these  apps  will  find  favor  in  this  segment   -­‐ Offers   support   for   more   .NET   programming   constructs   and   deeper   integration   with   Microsoft  services  than  the  Polyglot  platforms   -­‐ Enterprises   wanting   to   have   an   easier   on-­‐ramp   to   Windows   Azure   in   a   hybrid   setup   will   find   Apprenda  platform  more  useful   -­‐ The  fact  that  they  have  some  large  enterprise  customers  takes  any  longevity  concerns  out  of   picture  and  makes  them  a  very  attractive  acquisition  target   Disadvantages       -­‐ Lack   of   support   for   modern   languages   is   a   handicap   for   any   organization   wanting   to   use   languages  like  PHP,  Ruby,  Python,  etc..   -­‐ Support   for   NoSQL   is   missing.   However,   Apprenda   API   can   talk   to   NoSQL   data   stores   hosted   elsewhere   Competitors   We  see  the  following  vendors  as  competitors  to  Apprenda:   • Traditional  middleware  players   • Both  hosted  and  Private  PaaS  providers   • Public  infrastructure  cloud  providers   • Even   though   Apprenda   has   been   few   steps   ahead   of   Microsoft   in   offering   a   more   robust   enterprise   platform,   the   threat   from   one   of   the   largest   software   companies   in   the   world   will   always  be  a  concern  
  4. 4. Briefing  Notes  -­‐  Apprenda    A  Briefing  Note  By  Krishnan  Subramanian   Summary     Apprenda  has  clearly  shown  the  world  that  enterprise  can  rely  on  PaaS  to  meet  their  developer  needs.   They  are  taking  the  best  of  breed  approach  to  application  development  platform  over  Polyglot.  With  the   announcement  that  J  P  Morgan  Chase  is  one  of  their  customers,  they  are  positioning  themselves  to  be  a   strong  competitor  in  the  rising  PaaS  market.  As  the  Youtube  generation  of  developers  (a  term  we  use  for   very   young   developers   who   grew   up   with   internet)   enters   the   enterprise   developer   workforce,   the   demands  for  modern  language  will  eventually  force  Apprenda  to  support  these  languages.